Centralia man pleads guilty to federal meth distribution, weapons charges

EAST ST. LOUIS — A 28-year-old Centralia man pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court to three counts of meth distribution, carrying a firearm during a drug trafficking crime, and unlawful possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Dominique Lavelle Oatis

Dominique Lavelle Oatis remains in federal custody without bond after he was arrested on the charges in Kansas earlier this year. The offenses all occurred in Centralia in March of 2018.

Sentencing is scheduled for December 5. For the drug distribution charges, Oatis faces a maximum sentence of 20 years’ imprisonment, a $1 million fine, and at least three years supervised release.

For carrying a gun during and relation to a drug trafficking crime, Oatis faces 5 years to life imprisonment, which must follow any other term of imprisonment imposed, a fine of up to $250,000, and supervised release of not more than five years.

Being a felon in possession of a firearm carries a maximum sentence of 10 years imprisonment, a $250,000 fine, and three years supervised release.

Information leading to the charges against Oatis was obtained in an investigation conducted by the FBI, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, the Centralia Police Department, and the Carlyle Police Department.