Biloxi felon set to enter a plea in crack cocaine conspiracy

Willie Eugene Russell
Willie Eugene Russell

GULFPORT -- A Biloxi felon accused in a conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine in Harrison County is set to enter a plea Monday in U.S. District Court.

The plea hearing for Willie Eugene Russell, 38, is scheduled at 10 a.m. before U.S. District Judge Louis Guirola Jr.

Authorities arrested Russell in April shortly after narcotics agents were headed to his home with a search warrant.

Police had bought crack from him during undercover operations. When agents saw him leaving his home the evening of April 16, they followed him.

At one point during a vehicle chase, authorities spotted him throwing something out the window, but it blew back in -- and turned out to be 2 grams of crack.

At his arrest, agents seized more than 6 ounces of crack cocaine and $6,000 in suspected drug money. He was arrested then on state charges of possession with intent to distribute crack and sale of cocaine.1

A federal grand jury later indicted him on charges of conspiracy to distribute crack and possession with intent to distribute crack.

According to the indictment, he conspired to sell more than 5 kilos of crack in Harrison County from about June 2012 through his June 23 indictment.

Russell has remained in custody since his initial arrest.

At the time of his most recent charges, he was under house arrest on a felony drug conviction. He's now serving one year in prison for possession of a controlled substance, according to the state Department of Corrections.

He had been scheduled to enter a plea in the federal case in November, but the plea date was moved to January at the request of his attorney, Jim Davis.