NEW ORLEANS, LA (WVUE) - U.S. Attorney Kenneth A. Polite announced that Gross Williams, age 49, and his wife, Kathleen Williams, age 46, both residents of New Orleans, pled guilty today. Gross Williams pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute a kilogram or more of heroin and five kilograms or more of cocaine, as well as illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Kathleen Williams pled guilty to obstruction of justice for destroying a cellular phone used by Gross Williams in his drug dealing activity.
According to court documents, Gross Williams was a large-scale narcotics dealer. He operated a used car business in Arabi that served as a cover and means of laundering his drug proceeds. Law enforcement officers seized over $425,000 in cash and a .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol from the Williams's bedroom during a search, and later discovered another $240,000 in cash in a safe deposit box that Kathleen had opened in her name. Through a detailed financial investigation, law enforcement was able to show that Gross deposited hundreds of thousands of dollars in cash into the bank accounts of his used car business despite selling only a few mid range models each year. Kathleen also admitted that she destroyed her husband's "dope phone" the day that he was arrested.
Gross Williams faces a minimum term of imprisonment of 20 years to a maximum of life, a fine of up to $20,000,000 and ten years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. Kathleen Williams faces a maximum term of imprisonment of twenty years, a fine of up to $25,000, and 3 years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment. U.S. District Judge Kurt D. Engelhardt set sentencing for August 17, 2016.