A Bradenton rapper sentenced to life in 2008 on a charge of cocaine possession was one of seventy-two recipients of a commutation from President Obama last week.
Antonio Lee Alls, known in the music community as Tampa Tony, was arrested in 2006 after accepting delivery of 24 kilograms (53 lbs.) of cocaine from an eventual co-defendant. According to court documents, law enforcement used confidential informants to build the case and orchestrate the sale.
The confidential informant in Alls’ case traveled to Arizona in October, 2006 and met with Sergio Medina and retrieved the cocaine from him. The government alleged that the initial plan was to transport it via tractor trailer to Julio Cesar Hernandez-Varela, who lived in Wesley Chapel at that time. Instead of delivering the cocaine as planned, the confidential informant took it to the Drug Enforcement Administration, who swapped it with “sham” cocaine. The government said that the fake cocaine was then delivered to Hernandez-Varela roughly a week later, and they say that Hernandez-Varela then delivered it to Alls in a store parking lot in Wesley Chapel later that day.
Authorities said they seized $20,000 from Alls’ vehicle upon his arrest, plus another $219,000 at a home in Hudson. Alls, Hernandez-Varela, Medina, and one other alleged co-conspirator were tried together, and Alls was convicted of possession and conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute five kilograms of cocaine the following November. The 33-year-old was subsequently sentenced to life in prison in mid-March of 2008.
Alls, who is now forty-one and has served 104 months of the sentence to this point, now must serve a total of 150 months on the conviction, which means he will be eligible for release in September, 2020.