Wednesday, December 15, 2010

U.S. Attorney Indicts 42 in PA Drug Ring

The Pittsburgh U.S. Attorney’s office announced indictments of 42 people on drug trafficking charges today.

39 of the 42 defendants are from the Pittsburgh area and are facing charges of dealing both powder cocaine and crack cocaine in the suburbs east of Pittsburgh. 30 of the 42 have been arrested; 12 remain at-large.

U.S. Attorney David Hickton says the drug ring was involved in Dallas, Texas and Atlanta, Georgia, as well as the eastern suburbs.

Hickton says the FBI led the large-scale investigation, which he hopes will ultimately benefit public safety.

“Freedom from fear is a basic right. Violent criminals who tyrannize our neighborhoods will feel the full force of the law as it can be marshaled by this office,” says Hickton.

Hickton says many of the defendants were often armed but would not discuss any personal histories of violence.

The four separate but related indictments also seek forfeiture of illegal drug proceeds, including two McKeesport properties, a 2010 Mercedes-Benz and three other vehicles.

Each defendant faces a prison sentence of 10 years to life and a fine of $4,000,000.

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