- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 1, 2015

THIBODAUX, La. (AP) - A man serving a life sentence in Angola for selling cocaine in Lafourche Parish has been granted a hearing after claiming he was unaware of an offer that would have allowed him to serve eight years.

Jessie Bell Jr. was convicted in 2008 of cocaine distribution and possession with intent to distribute cocaine for selling an ounce of the drug in 2006.

Judge Walter Lanier initially sentenced Bell to 30 years in prison on each count, with the sentences to run concurrently. But prosecutors asked the judge to sentence Bell as a habitual offender, and Lanier complied, handing down a life term.

The Courier reports (https://bit.ly/1N6ZyKK) the Louisiana Supreme Court on Friday ordered Lanier to schedule a hearing regarding Bell’s claim that his attorney didn’t tell him about the plea offer.

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Information from: The Courier, https://www.houmatoday.com

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