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Sharon L. Potter

1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Fawn E. Thomas, Public Affairs Specialist


February 5, 2009

Wheeling Resident Sentenced
To 8+ Years on Marijuana Charge

WHEELING, WEST VIRGINIA — A 25 year old, Wheeling, West Virginia, resident was sentenced on January 30, 2009, by Judge Frederick P. Stamp, Jr.

United States Attorney Sharon L. Potter announced that SHAWNDALE SAUNDERS was sentenced to 100 months imprisonment to be followed by four years of supervised release. SAUNDERS was convicted on October 15, 2008, after a three-day jury trial, on one count of aiding and abetting the possession with intent to distribute marijuana on March 28, 2008, in Wheeling. Testimony at trial revealed that a package containing 9.65 pounds of marijuana, with a street value of between $15,000 and $25,000, was mailed from Glendale, Arizona, to a Wheeling residence, addressed to a fictitious person. When the package was delivered, SAUNDERS and co-defendant Joseph King were at the residence. King signed for the package, using the fictitious name. Shortly after receiving the package, it was opened by the defendants, triggering a silent beeper alarm to law enforcement, who then executed a search warrant for the residence. Agents recovered the marijuana in the basement of the residence, where they also found King attempting to hide in a crawl space.

Judge Stamp found SAUNDERS was a career offender having been convicted previously in Ohio Circuit Court on two occasions for possession with intent to distribute a Schedule II controlled substance and once for wanton endangerment. SAUNDERS was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney John C. Parr. The case was investigated by the Ohio Valley Drug & Violent Crimes Task Force (which consists of officers from the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Wheeling Police Department and the Ohio County Sheriff's Department) and the United States Postal Inspection Service.


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