Alleged Knoxville gang member convicted on drug charges

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KNOXVILLE (WATE) – An alleged member of the Vice Lords criminal street gang will spend time in prison after being convicted on drug charges in a Knox County courtroom Wednesday.

The conviction is part of the newly created Career Gang Unit of the District Attorney General’s office.

A Knox County grand jury convicted ZIberia Carero, 35, of possession with intent to deliver cocaine.

At trial, Assistant District Attorney General Philip Morton argued Carero was a member of the gang. The finding raises the offense to a Class A felony, which carries a punishment of 15 to 60 years in prison.

According to District Attorney General Charme Allen, the case began with an October 2012 investigation by the Knoxville Police Department into cocaine sales by Carero, who went by the street name “Ghost Z.”

Investigators testified that Carero admitted during a previous trial that he was a member of the gang. Carero is already serving 23 years in prison for that conviction.

Sentencing is set for May 7. Allen’s office will seek an enhanced sentence.

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