Yesterday, a federal jury found 36-year-old Frank Freitas Higginbotham of Hastings guilty of one count of conspiracy to manufacture methamphetamine and one count of distribution of methamphetamine.
According to detectives with the Drug Enforcement Administration and the St Johns County Sheriff’s Office who investigated this case, Higginbotham manufactured and sold methamphetamine at various locations in St Johns County.
The testimony and evidence presented at trial revealed that methamphetamine users gave Higginbotham boxes of medication containing pseudoephedrine in exchange for methamphetamine.
Pseudoephedrine, which is an ingredient in many cold and allergy medications, is the primary ingredient needed to manufacture methamphetamine.
On February 13, 2012, Higginbotham sold methamphetamine to an undercover Drug Enforcement Administration agent. He was indicted by a federal grand jury on August 2, 2012.
A sentencing hearing has been scheduled for June 3, where Higginbotham faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years — up to life in federal prison for the conspiracy offense. He faces up to 20 years in federal prison for the distribution charge.
Category: Public Safety