A Council Bluffs man was sentenced on Friday (February 15, 2013) in US District Court in Council Bluffs on charges of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and possession of a firearm in relation to drug trafficking. 28-year-old Clifford Arthur Ellis of Council Bluffs was sentenced to 235 months imprisonment and 5 years of supervised release following his release by District Court Judge Stephanie M. Rose. Ellis was sentenced to 60 months on the firearm charge and 175 months on the drug conspiracy charge. The Court also ordered Ellis to forfeit the firearm and ammunition which he had possessed, and to pay a $200.00 special assessment for the Crime Victim Fund. Ellis remains in the custody of the United States Marshal pending designation of the Federal Bureau of Prisons facility at which he will serve his sentence.
Ellis had earlier plead guilty to the charges that arose out of an investigation by the SouthWest Iowa Narcotics Task Force which began in mid-2011. Ellis admitted responsibility for approximately 1.36 kilograms of methamphetamine. Ellis also regularly carried a loaded .45 caliber pistol, and then, later, a loaded 9mm pistol.
On January 4, 2012, Ellis and two other persons were arrested by Council Bluffs Police Officers in the course of the burglary of a truck parked in an apartment parking lot in Council Bluffs. The 9mm pistol was recovered from Ellis at that time.
On April 1, 2012, an Iowa State Patrol Trooper and Mills County Sheriff Deputies arrested Ellis and another person in Mills County carrying approximately one ounce of methamphetamine for distribution.
The investigation was conducted by the SouthWest Iowa Narcotics Task Force, the Council Bluffs, Iowa, Police Department, the Mills County Sheriff’s Department, and the Iowa State Patrol. The Pottawattamie County Attorney’s Office and the Mills County Attorney’s Office also aided in this case, which was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa.