News and Press Releases

Federal Jury Convicts Arizona Men On Drug, Gun Charges

May 5, 2010

PITTSBURGH, Pa. - Acting United States Attorney Robert S. Cessar announced today, May 5, 2010, that after deliberating 1 1/2 hours, a jury of five men and seven women found Stephan Andre Pete and Frank Murphy guilty of violating federal narcotics and firearms laws.

Pete, age 32, of El Mirage, Arizona, and Murphy, age 44, of Phoenix, Arizona, were tried before Senior United States District Judge Gustave Diamond in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

According to Assistant United States Attorney Margaret E. Picking, who prosecuted the case, the evidence presented at trial established that Pete and Murphy conspired with two other men, one of whom was a juvenile, to distribute one kilogram of cocaine to a customer who was waiting in a Bridgeville area hotel.  The evidence showed that all four men came from Arizona.  The customer was actually working with the Pennsylvania State Police, who were waiting for them.  When the car in which the men were traveling arrived in the parking lot, all four were arrested by the State Police.  Inside the car was one kilogram of cocaine and a Glock .45 caliber handgun belonging to Pete.

Judge Diamond scheduled sentencing for September 6, 2010 at 10:00 a.m. The law provides for a total sentence of life imprisonment, including a mandatory minimum of five (5) years, for Murphy, and ten (10) years in prison for Pete, a fine of $2,250,000, or both.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based on the seriousness of the offenses and the  criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Pending sentencing, the court revoked Pete's bond.  Murphy is already detained.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Pennsylvania State Police, Troop B Vice in Washington County conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Stephen Andre Pete and Frank Murphy.

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