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Press Release

Former Luzerne County Constable Sentenced To 18 Months’ Imprisonment For Possessing Unregistered Firearm

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

SCRANTON- The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Sydney Snelling, Jr., age 49, formerly of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, was sentenced yesterday by United States District Judge Robert D. Mariani to 18 months of imprisonment, for the unlawful possession of an unregistered firearm.

According to United States Attorney Gerard M. Karam, Snelling pleaded guilty to possessing an assault rifle bearing a modified barrel of under 16” on April 7, 2022, without possessing the requisite tax stamp to possess such a firearm.  At the time of the offense, Snelling was a Luzerne County Constable, but has since been removed from his position.  In addition to the sentence of imprisonment, Judge Mariani ordered Snelling to forfeit the modified firearm, and imposed a two-year term of supervised release, to commence upon his release from imprisonment.

The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Phillip J. Caraballo prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

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Updated June 7, 2023

Project Safe Neighborhoods