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Press Release

Man Pleads Guilty to Causing Opioid Overdose Deaths

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

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A Canadian man living in Leesburg pleaded guilty today to conspiring to distribute heroin and fentanyl that caused two deaths and one non-fatal overdose in 2016.

According to court documents, Joseph Riley Curry, 29, obtained heroin and fentanyl from sources of supply that he distributed to customers in Loudoun County. Drugs that Curry distributed killed two people in March 2016, and caused a third individual to experience an overdose that required medical intervention. In August 2017, Curry was arrested on a state felony distribution charge. While in custody, Curry ordered another individual to destroy evidence he thought might be used against him in a possible federal prosecution.

Curry pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute heroin resulting in death and faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 20 years in prison and maximum penalty of life in prison when sentenced on Feb. 22, 2019. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

This matter was investigated by the Leesburg Police Department and the Washington Field Office’s Safe Streets/HIDTA Task Force – Northern Virginia which is composed of FBI Agents, and Task Force Officers from the Fairfax County, Loudoun County, Leesburg, Prince William County Police Departments, HSI, ATF, with assistance from the DEA Mid-Atlantic Regional Laboratory.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, Nancy McNamara, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, Michael L. Chapman, Loudoun County Sheriff, and Gregory C. Brown, Leesburg Chief of Police, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Anthony J. Trenga accepted the plea. Assistant U.S. Attorney David A. Peters is prosecuting 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. 1:18-cr-396.


Joshua Stueve
Director of Communications

Updated November 30, 2018