Ava Man sentenced to 10 years for smuggling methamphetamine and illegal firearm

SPRINGFIELD, Missouri – An Ava man has been convicted in federal court of illegal possession of methamphetamine and a firearm.

Charles D. Kessler, 41, was sentenced by United States District Chief Justice Beth Phillips on July 29, 2021 to 10 years in federal prison without parole.

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On July 2, 2020, Kessler pleaded guilty to one count of possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and to one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Kessler admitted he was in possession of 37.8 grams of methamphetamine and a loaded .380 caliber Taurus pistol when law enforcement officers executed a search warrant at his home on January 5, 2017. The methamphetamine, which Kessler admitted he intended to distribute, was found inside a locked safe next to a bed in Kessler’s bedroom, along with medication distribution equipment . The gun was found on Kessler’s headboard.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of a firearm or ammunition. Kessler has previously been convicted of a felony of possession of a controlled substance, burglary, retail theft, aggravated battery and theft.

This case was continued by US Assistant Prosecutors Byron H. Black and Josephine L. Stockard. It was investigated by Douglas County, Missouri, Sheriff’s Department, Wright County, Missouri, Sheriff’s Department, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

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