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Press Release

Scranton Man Sentenced To Over 15 Years’ Imprisonment For Drug Distribution Resulting In Death

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 Matthew McCollum, age 34, of Scranton, Pennsylvania, was sentenced on December 19, 2018, to 188 months’ imprisonment and three years’ supervised release by Senior United States District Court Judge A. Richard Caputo for drug distribution resulting in death.

According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, on December 13, 2015, McCollum distributed fentanyl laced heroin to a Dunmore man resulting in his death.

McCollum was indicted along with Josthan Cardona, age 27, and Holly Kaszuba, age 44, both of Scranton, on August 23, 2017.  Cardona pleaded guilty on October 24, 2018 to conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance that resulted in two deaths and caused serious bodily injury to another.  He is awaiting sentencing.  Kaszuba was convicted by a jury trial on November 7, 2018 of drug distribution resulting in death and awaits sentencing.

Judge Caputo also ordered McCollum to pay restitution in the amount of $8,000. 

The investigation was conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration – Scranton Office, and the Dunmore and Scranton Police Departments.  Assistant United States Attorney Michelle Olshefski 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 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 and other opioids. Led by the United States Attorney’s Office, the Heroin Initiative targets heroin and opioid 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.

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Updated December 20, 2018

Drug Trafficking
Project Safe Neighborhoods