Detroit drug dealer gets 5 years on firearms charge

Thomas Lee Nelson. (Photo: Herald Dispatch)

Thomas Lee Nelson (Photo: Herald Dispatch)

A Detroit man was sentenced Monday to five years in prison after pleading guilty to possessing a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.

According to a Justice Department news release, the Huntington FBI Drug Task Force conducted a search of 48-year-old Thomas Lee Nelson’s home in Huntington, West Virginia, on March 10, 2016.

During the search, authorities found and seized a loaded Cobray Model DD .410/.45 caliber handgun from Nelson’s bedroom. Heroin was found and seized from the same room.

Nelson admitted to having the gun in order to protect himself and his stash of heroin.

The case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a nationwide program aimed to reduce gun crime in the country. It was also the result of a concerted effort by the U.S attorney’s office for the Southern District of West Virginia to combat the illegal sale of prescription drugs and heroin.