|Vice Lords leader sentenced to life in prison|
|Wednesday, February 20, 2013|
Lebanon Police Department released a statement today that Monique “Money” Smith, a high-ranking figure in the Vice Lords gang, was sentenced to life in prison plus five years after a sentencing hearing in federal court last Thursday.
Smith, 40, of Cookeville, led operations in Middle Tennessee, selling cocaine and marijuana, prosecutors said. A jury found him guilty in October on drug and weapons charges related to his activities in the Chicago-based gang.
The report said that Smith took the stand for over an hour, occasionally asking his attorney to read for him. He offered various defenses, motions and commentary that often rambled and lacked clarity, most of which U.S. District Judge Todd Campbell rejected.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Braden Boucek declined to present additional evidence for the sentencing hearing, saying that the evidence presented in trial stood on its own.
A federal grand jury indicted Smith and 16 other mid-state individuals, including 11 members of the Vice Lords gang and their drug suppliers, for their participation in a drug distribution conspiracy and associated violence while illegally possessing firearms in September 2011 after a three year investigation.