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Press Release

St. Petersburg Man Pleads Guilty To Distribution Of Fentanyl Resulting In Death

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, FL – John Sibley (33, St. Petersburg) has pleaded guilty to distribution of fentanyl resulting in death. He faces a minimum mandatory penalty of 20 years, and up to life, in federal prison.

According to the plea agreement, on June 16, 2019, Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office detectives and the Treasure Island Police Department’s Marine Unit found the victim’s body floating in the water in the area of 5000 92nd Street North, in St. Petersburg. Evidence of drug use was nearby. The immediate cause of death was determined to be drowning, but a medical examination revealed the presence of fentanyl and cocaine in the victim’s body and that, but for the victim ingesting fentanyl, he would not have drowned. Further investigation identified Sibley as the supplier of the fentanyl.

Four days later, an undercover detective from the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office and a confidential source were involved in obtaining a quantity of fentanyl from Sibley. The phone Sibley used to arrange the deal was the same one that had been used to set up the fatal deal for fentanyl on June 16, 2019.

This case was investigated by the United States Drug Enforcement Administration, the St. Petersburg Police Department, and the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, with assistance from the Treasure Island Police Marine Unit, as part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. The principal mission of the OCDETF program is to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking and money laundering organizations and those primarily responsible for the nation’s drug supply. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Dan Baeza.

Updated March 16, 2020

Drug Trafficking