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Ex-Fort Bragg soldier sentenced in methamphetamine case

Fort Bragg, NC. (U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Savannah District/Released)

A former Fort Bragg soldier has been sentenced to five years in prison after pleading guilty to possession of pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina said Wednesday.

Zackery B. Laney, 31, formerly of Fort Bragg, pleaded guilty July 8, 2018 and was sentenced by District Judge James C. Dever III. Laney’s sentence includes another three years of supervised release after he serves his sentence.

Officials said the Fort Bragg Criminal Investigation Command received a report Nov. 27, 2017, from Laney’s wife who alleged her husband “threatened to kill members of his chain of command.”

Laney was an active duty sergeant in the Army stationed at Fort Bragg, officials said.

It was unknown with which unit Laney belonged and details about his discharge were not available.

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Laney’s wife told officials an AR-15 rifle was missing from their residence and alleged he “was a manufacturer and user of drugs,” officials said.

The same day, an Army captain contacted Laney and requested he return to his unit.

Officials said Laney complied, but left the building before he saw his commanding officer, entered his vehicle and attempted to put the key in the ignition.

Laney was asked to return to the building.

Officials said Laney’s vehicle was searched based on his wife’s report, and an AR-15 rifle, containing a loaded magazine with one round in the chamber, was located in the back seat. A partially loaded magazine was found in the driver’s door, officials said.

Officials said a bag containing a funnel, a plastic tube with a bottle cap attached containing a white powdery substance, electrical tape, and a box of instant cold packs containing ammonium nitrate were also found in the back seat.

“(A) further search of the vehicle revealed items consistent with the production of methamphetamine,” officials said.

As part of the investigation, agents conducted a search of the pseudoephedrine purchases made by Laney through records maintained by the National Precursor Log Exchange.

The database showed Laney used his military identification card to make pseudoephedrine purchases between Nov. 30, 2016 to Nov. 26, 2017, officials said.

The database showed Laney purchased products containing pseudoephedrine 95 times during that time frame from at least 14 different pharmacies in Cumberland County to total 219.84 grams.

“It also appeared Laney used two identification numbers associated with his military identification card to circumvent the legal sales limit,” officials said.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott A. Lemmon.

Agencies involved in the investigation were the Fort Bragg Military Police, the United States Army Criminal Investigation Command and the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation.

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© 2019 The Fayetteville Observer (Fayetteville, N.C.)

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.