An Independence woman will spend eight years in federal prison without parole for leading a conspiracy to distribute several kilograms of methamphetamine.

Melanie Hamilton, 46, was sentenced Thursday in federal court in Kansas City, and she is the last of 10 defendants who pleaded guilty and were sentenced as part of the conspiracy that ran from Nov. 1, 2013 to Sept. 24, 2014.

Hamilton pleaded guilty in October 2017. She admitted that she obtained large quantities of meth – at least 5 kilograms – and broke them down for redistribution. According to court documents, a confidential informant made three separate controlled purchases from Hamilton; on each occasion she weighed out approximately 8.3 grams of meth from a large zip-lock freezer bag that contained multiple pounds of methamphetamine.

Officers searched Hamilton's home on Sept. 24, 2014, and seized more than a kilogram of meth, drug paraphernalia and a DVR containing surveillance of individuals coming and going at her residence. She told investigators that she had received one to two pounds of meth every other week for the previous three months.

This case was investigated by the Jackson County Drug Task Force and the Independence Police Department.