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Minnesota man sentenced to prison for Ashland meth distribution

A Minnesota man will spend 156 months in federal prison for distributing more than 500 grams of methamphetamine in northwest Wisconsin.

Karl L. McKenzie Sr., 47, of Anoka, Minn., was convicted June 6 following a two-day trial in federal court in Madison. He was sentenced Wednesday by U.S. District Judge James D. Peterson.

Evidence presented at trial showed that McKenzie was a supplier of methamphetamine to dealers in northwest Wisconsin. He was arrested Feb. 5 in Ashland after he provided more than 877 grams — almost two pounds — of methamphetamine to an individual there. An analysis of the methamphetamine found it to be 98 percent pure. McKenzie was indicted by a federal grand jury Feb. 15 for this distribution of methamphetamine.

At sentencing, Judge Peterson noted that McKenzie was the leader of a sophisticated, regional drug distribution operation involving tiered levels of dealers and money laundering. McKenzie will serve five years of supervised release after his prison term.

The charge against McKenzie is the result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration, Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation, Ashland County Sheriff's Department and Ashland Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Corey Stephan handled prosecution.