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Press Release

Ohio Man Indicted For Drug Trafficking Conspiracy

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 today Curtis Riley, age 56, of Dayton, Ohio, was indicted by a federal grand jury yesterday for conspiring to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than a kilogram of heroin and fentanyl.

According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, the indictment alleges that Riley conspired with others beginning in 2017, to distribute the heroin and fentanyl. The indictment further alleges that Riley possessed with intent to distribute more than one kilogram of heroin and fentanyl on December 3, 2018, in Luzerne County. A kilogram of heroin is equivalent to approximately 40,000 retail bags of heroin.

The charges against Riley resulted from an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Pennsylvania State Police. Assistant U.S. Attorney Francis P. Sempa is prosecuting the cases.  

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 make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

This case was also 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.

Indictments and Criminal Informations are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.

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 is life imprisonment. The charge also carries a mandatory minimum penalty of ten years in prison. 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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Updated December 12, 2018

Drug Trafficking
Project Safe Neighborhoods