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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, June 30, 2016

Harrisburg Man Convicted Of Distributing Crack Cocaine And Possessing A Firearm In Furtherance Of His Drug Trafficking Activities

HARRISBURG – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that on June 29, 2016, a jury convicted Laquan Kellam, age 33, Harrisburg, of three counts of distributing crack cocaine, one count of possessing with the intent to distribute over 280 grams of crack cocaine and one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of his drug trafficking activities.  The two-day trial was held before U.S. District Court Judge Sylvia H. Rambo.

According to United States Attorney Peter Smith, the jury returned with the verdict of guilty after approximately seven hours of deliberation.  The jury found that Kellam distributed crack cocaine on June 20, 25 and 27, 2014, and that he possessed with the intent to distribute over 280 grams of crack cocaine. The jury also found Kellam guilty of possessing a firearm found at a Harrisburg residence in furtherance of his narcotics trafficking activities.

Judge Rambo remanded Kellam into custody following the verdict.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Eric Pfisterer, Phillip J. Caraballo and Meredith A Taylor.

The charges stem from an investigation by the Harrisburg City Police Department and agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

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 the combined charges is life imprisonment with a 15 year mandatory minimum and 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 June 30, 2016