The last of 48 defendants snagged in a 19-month undercover operation in Richmond County called Operation Fox Hunt was sentenced Wednesday in federal court.
Derek Darnell Thompson, 26, of Augusta, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Randal Hall to 4½ years in prison followed by three years on probation for a charge of trafficking in cocaine. With the exception of three fugitives, Thompson’s sentencing marks the end of Operation Fox Hunt, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
The operation started in 2009 and evolved into an undercover sting in which the suspects sold guns and drugs to narcotics detectives at Cyrus’s Corner at a strip mallat Deans Bridge and Lumpkin roads. The operation later moved to an apartment complex on Wrightsboro Road before search warrants and arrest warrants were served en masse in March 2011.
A total of 75 defendants were targeted in the sting, with 48 of them facing federal charges. All the defendants pleaded guilty and received an average five-year federal prison sentence, but some were sentenced to as much as 14 years behind bars.