A Carbondale man will spend the rest of his life in prison for his role in a drug dealing ring.

Bryant Maybell, 26, was sentenced to life in prison Monday in federal court in Benton. Maybell, also known as "B," was previously convicted on a charge of conspiracy to distribute crack cocaine.

Maybell's life sentence was mandatory because he had two previous felony drug convictions in Illinois. Parole is not a possibility.

"I hope this prison term, seemingly extreme to some, but fully justified by the law and the facts in this case, will serve as a deterrent to offenders who persist in dealing poison to the communities in Southern Illinois," U.S. Attorney Stephen Wigginton said in a news release issued Tuesday. "Mr. Maybell made conscious and deliberate decisions to waste his life. Perhaps others can learn from his example."

Maybell was found to have been part of a group called "JACKMOB," which, from at least January 2005 through October 2009, distributed crack cocaine in Carbondale, mainly on Jackson Street. Group members often carried guns during the deals, the U.S. attorney said.

Maybell was arrested Aug. 6, 2006, on suspicion of possession packaged crack cocaine. On March 2, 2007, Maybell sold more than a quarter-ounce of crack to a confidential source working for police. On Nov. 15, 2008, a search warrant was executed for a Marion residence where Maybell and an associate were staying, and agents found 92 grams of crack, 33 grams of cocaine and a loaded 9 mm pistol, the government said.

In sentencing, a judge decided Maybell was responsible for distributing more than 2.8 kilograms of crack. He also received a sentencing enhancement for possession of a firearm.

Seven co-defendants of Maybell's have also received sentences for their roles in the crime, ranging from 6 1/2 to 20 years in prison. Two other co-conspirators also received 20-year prison terms.

The investigation was conducted by the Jackson County Sheriff's Office, Murphysboro Police Department, Illinois State Police, Southern Illinois Enforcement Group, Carbondale Police Department and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. The Jackson County State's Attorney's Office assisted.

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