Playboy TV’s Buckwild Co-Host Sentenced For Role In Drug Smuggling Ring

Kenneth

"Buckwild" Francis, the former co-host of the cancelled Playboy TV series

Buckwild, has been sentenced to prison for his role in an ectasy drug smuggling

ring. US

District Judge Manuel Real sentenced the 38-year-old personality to more than

11 years in federal prison on Monday (April 16). Francis,

who pleaded guilty last year to conspiracy to import and distribute ecstasy, is

best known for hosting the Playboy TV series Buckwild with rapper Snoop

Dogg. The

sentencing marks the end of a case that involved models who, according to prosecutors,

were recruited to travel to Belgium and the Netherlands to pick up packages containing

ecstasy tablets. Although

the couriers told authorities they were smuggling diamonds, assistant US attorney

Cheryl Murphy stated that the packages actually contained tens of thousands of

pills that were brought into Los Angeles and New York in 2000 and 2001.The

alleged ringleader of the crime, Ronald Joseph Samuel, is currently awaiting sentencing

after pleading guilty in the case, prosecutors said. In

his defense, Francis said he initially thought the models were traveling to Europe

for photo shoots. He

later found out that they were smuggling drugs and told Real that he "got

involved in this whole drug-smuggling conspiracy by wanting to start my own business,

which was a modeling business." In

addition to Francis, seven other men in the case were sentenced to prison, where

they will serve stints ranging from three to nine years.

Buckwild

was a Hip-Hop themed show, which premiered in 2004 and featured uncensored music

videos with related sexual segments, as well as interviews with popular Hip-Hop

artists, as they went to strip clubs, shopped for lingerie for their significant

others or participated in their favorite extreme sports. Artists

featured on the show included OutKast, Busta Rhymes, Lil’ Jon and the Eastside

Boys, the Ying Yang Twins, Loon and Treach from Naughty by Nature.

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