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How Much Prison Time Did Big Meech Get?

Demetrius “Big Meech” Flenory rose to infamy in the early 2000s as the leader of the Black Mafia Family, one of the most notorious drug trafficking organizations in American history. At the height of his power, Big Meech was bringing in over $270 million per year by trafficking cocaine across the United States. However, his meteoric rise was matched only by his incredible downfall once law enforcement set their sights on taking down the Black Mafia Family.

Big Meech was able to evade capture for years, but ultimately his crimes caught up to him. So exactly how much time did Big Meech end up serving for his pivotal role in running the massive criminal enterprise? This article will explore Big Meech’s crimes, convictions, quotes from his trial, and answer the key question of how much time he ended up serving in federal prison.

Overview of the Black Mafia Family

The Black Mafia Family was originally founded in Detroit in the late 1980s by Big Meech and his brother Terry “Southwest T” Flenory. The organization began as a cocaine trafficking operation that moved drugs from cities like Los Angeles and Atlanta back to Detroit to be sold.

Big Meech helped the business expand through brilliant marketing tactics like branding the cocaine as “Blue Magic” and “BMF.” He recruited rapper Young Jeezy to promote the brands in his music and videos, helping them gain street cred and popularity.

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At its peak in the mid-2000s, the Black Mafia Family had over 500 members and was generating nearly $270 million per year in revenue through their trafficking and money laundering activities. The organization had branches set up in cities across the United States and Big Meech was pulling in a personal income of over $100 million annually.

Crimes and Convictions of Big Meech

Big Meech was adept at evading law enforcement for years while building his massive drug trafficking empire. But in 2005, authorities set up a specialized task force to take down the Black Mafia Family and Meech’s run finally came to an end.

In October of 2007, Big Meech was convicted on the following federal charges:

  • Continuing Criminal Enterprise
  • Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute over 5kg of Cocaine
  • Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine
  • Conspiracy to Launder Money Instruments

In 2008, Big Meech faced another trial on additional charges:

  • Running a Continuing Criminal Enterprise
  • Conspiracy to Distribute and Possess with Intent to Distribute over 5kg of Cocaine
  • Conspiracy to Launder Money Instruments
  • 2 counts of Income Tax Evasion

Ultimately, across the two federal trials, Big Meech was convicted on the majority of the charges brought against him. His right hand man and BMF co-founder Southwest T was also convicted and sentenced to over 25 years in prison.

Table of Crimes and Convictions

2007Continuing Criminal EnterpriseYes
2007Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute CocaineYes
2007Possession with Intent to Distribute CocaineYes
2007Conspiracy to Launder Money InstrumentsYes
2008Continuing Criminal EnterpriseYes
2008Conspiracy to Distribute/Possess with Intent to Distribute CocaineYes
2008Conspiracy to Launder Money InstrumentsYes
20082 counts of Income Tax EvasionYes

Big Meech’s Conviction Quotes

When Big Meech was handed down his sentence, he remained defiant and steadfastly maintained his innocence. Here are some notable quotes from his conviction:

“This sentence will not stop anything. The BMF was a way of life, not just an organization.”

“I’m a CEO, not a drug dealer. I was providing jobs for thousands of people and giving opportunities to people who didn’t have any.”

“I’m no kingpin. I’m a survivor.”

“I still consider myself one of the most successful black men in Detroit.”

“My family members are targeted. We’re going through what any empire goes through.”

Despite his convictions and sentencing, it’s clear from these quotes that Big Meech still saw himself as a successful businessman rather than a criminal drug lord. He believed the Black Mafia Family provided economic opportunities for its members and maintained his defiant attitude even when faced with decades in prison.

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Big Meech’s Prison Sentence

So exactly how much time did Big Meech end up getting after being convicted on those sweeping criminal charges?

In March 2008, Big Meech was handed a total sentence of 30 years in federal prison. This included:

  • 30 years for Continuing Criminal Enterprise
  • 30 years for Conspiracy to Distribute Cocaine
  • 10 years for Money Laundering Conspiracy
  • 5 years for Income Tax Evasion

All sentences ran concurrently except for the tax evasion charges, meaning he faced a total of 30 years plus an additional 5 years for tax crimes.

At the age of 46 currently, Big Meech will not be released from federal custody until August 4, 2032 when he will be 72 years old.

He is serving out his time in a federal correctional institution in Oregon after originally being incarcerated in Atlanta. Big Meech also received fines totaling $5 million dollars in addition to his prison sentence.

So in summary – Big Meech received 35 years in federal prison due to leading the Black Mafia Family criminal empire and the extensive drug trafficking and money laundering activities coordinated under his leadership.


The downfall of Big Meech serves as a cautionary tale about the consequences of building a criminal enterprise, no matter how successful it may seem. While the Black Mafia Family generated exorbitant profits during its peak, Meech ended up losing his freedom for the rest of his working life as a result.

Big Meech rose from small-time drug dealer to multi-millionaire leader of a national drug trafficking organization. But his greed, hubris, and disregard for the law eventually caught up to him. Meech’s conviction quotes demonstrate he saw himself as a legitimate businessman rather than a criminal, but the courts decisively ruled otherwise.

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Despite getting a sentence of over 30 years in federal prison, Big Meech’s name still resonates on the streets as an infamous drug kingpin. But his real legacy will be serving as a warning about what happens when the party ends and the law enforcement bill comes due. Big Meech gambled his freedom on building a criminal empire – and ended up losing nearly everything as a result.

FAQs about Big Meech’s Prison Sentence

How old was Big Meech when he got sentenced?

Big Meech was 35 years old when he was first sentenced to 30 years in federal prison in 2008.

What prison is Big Meech in now?

Big Meech is currently incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Institution in Sheridan, Oregon.

When will Big Meech get out of jail?

According to his 30 year sentence, Big Meech will be released from federal custody on August 4th, 2032 when he is 72 years old.

Did Southwest T also go to jail?

Yes, Terry “Southwest T” Flenory, Big Meech’s brother and co-founder of the Black Mafia Family, was sentenced to 25 years in prison.

How much money did Big Meech make?

At the peak of his drug trafficking empire, Big Meech had an estimated net worth of over $100 million and was earning around $270 million per year in revenue.

Prison Inside Team

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Welcome to ‘Prison Inside,’ a blog dedicated to shedding light on the often hidden and misunderstood world within correctional facilities. Through firsthand accounts, personal narratives, and insightful reflections, we delve into the lives of those who find themselves behind bars, offering a unique perspective on the challenges, triumphs, and transformations that unfold within the confines of these walls.

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