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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Pennsylvania

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, December 19, 2016

Allentown Man Guilty Of Participating In A Heroin And Methamphetamine Trafficking Conspiracy

SCRANTON—The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Robert Estes, age 41, of Allentown, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Court Judge Malachy E. Mannion in Scranton, to conspiring with others to distribute more than 100 grams of heroin and more than 50 grams of methamphetamine in Carbon County, Pennsylvania, and elsewhere.  

According to United States Attorney Bruce D. Brandler, Estes admitted to being a manager and supervisor of a conspiracy that distributed between one and three kilograms of heroin (which is equivalent to 33,000 to 99,000 retail bags of heroin), and between 350 and 500 grams of methamphetamine, in the Carbon County area during early 2016 through June 2016.  

Estes faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and a potential maximum sentence of 40 years in prison, and a $5 million fine. Judge Mannion ordered a pre-sentence report to be completed. Sentencing will be scheduled at a later date.

The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Pennsylvania State Police, and the Allentown Police. Assistant U.S. Attorney Francis P. Sempa is prosecuting the case.

This case was brought as part of a district wide initiative to combat the nationwide epidemic regarding the use and distribution of heroin.  Led by the United States Attorney’s Office, the Heroin Initiative targets heroin traffickers operating in the Middle District of Pennsylvania and is part of a coordinated effort among federal, state and local law enforcement agencies to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who commit heroin related offenses.

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

The maximum penalty under federal law for this offense is 40 years’ imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.

 

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Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Updated December 19, 2016