GULFPORT, Miss. (AP) — A Mississippi man has pleaded guilty to illegally making moonshine.
Willie Necaise Jr., 77, of Kiln, entered the plea Friday in federal court to unlawful production of distilled spirits and interstate travel in aid of a racketeering enterprise, WLOX-TV reported. Necaise faces up to 10 years in prison and fines up to $250,000. U.S. District Judge Sul Ozerden will sentence Necaise on Oct. 16 at 10 a.m.
Necaise was arrested in 2018 after Mississippi Alcoholic Beverage Control agents found evidence of the moonshine operation at his home. Authorities say the investigation revealed that, over time, Necaise traveled out of state and obtained at least 569,775 pounds (258445.6 kilograms) of sugar, a primary ingredient for moonshine.
In addition, records showed Necaise getting large deliveries of propane gas to a rural shed in Hancock County, even during the summer.
Based on the records of the sugar purchased, it was determined that over 74,070 gallons (280385.5 liters) of taxable whiskey would be produced. No excise tax has ever been paid by Necaise so he owes the ATF Tax and Trade Bureau $898,692 in federal excise tax and the Mississippi Department of Revenue $369,752 in state excise tax.
A woman, Tangela Davenport, was also arrested at the same time as Necaise. It’s unclear what the status of her charges are at this time.