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Press Release

Drug Dealer Gets 30 Years For Fentanyl Related Death

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Virginia

NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – A Hampton Roads man was sentenced today to 30 years in prison for distributing fentanyl, which resulted in death. During the sentencing hearing, the Court noted that Burgess had appeared in court on various criminal charges at least 43 times during his life.

According to court documents, in November 2016 a man was found dead in his home as the result of a fentanyl overdose. Based on telephone records and eyewitnesses, Arnold Burgess, 50, was identified as the drug dealer who provided the victim with fentanyl. Five months after the death, Burgess was arrested in Stafford County with 1/4 kilogram of fentanyl. Burgess was connected to the William Joe drug trafficking organization, which was responsible for selling heroin on the Virginia Peninsula for many years prior to the arrest of its senior members in 2017.

The case was investigated as part of the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) Operation Broken Finger. The OCDETF program is a federal multi-agency, multi-jurisdictional task force that supplies supplemental federal funding to federal and state agencies involved in the identification, investigation, and prosecution of major drug trafficking organizations. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking, weapons trafficking and money laundering organizations, and those primarily responsible for the nation’s illegal drug supply.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Michael K. Lamonea, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) Norfolk, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Raymond A. Jackson. Assistant U.S. Attorney Eric M. Hurt prosecuted the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information is located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 4:17-cr-65.


Joshua Stueve
Director of Communications

Updated December 3, 2018

Drug Trafficking