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Justice News

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

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Stroudsburg Man Pleads Guilty To Heroin Trafficking

SCRANTON—The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that a James King, age 48, of Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, pleaded guilty today to possession with intent to distribute heroin, before Senior U.S. District Court Judge A. Richard Caputo in Wilkes-Barre.

According to United States Attorney Bruce D. Brandler, the defendant, James King, admitted to possessing with the intent to distribute approximately 60 grams of heroin which is the equivalent of 2,000 retail bags of heroin.  The heroin was found in his vehicle and residence in September of 2016.

According to the terms of the plea agreement, both the government and the defendant have agreed to recommend to the court that King be sentenced to 14 years in prison. Judge Caputo scheduled sentencing for April 17, 2017.

King was indicted by a federal grand jury in Scranton in October 2016, as a result of an investigation by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Stroud Area Regional Police Department. 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 20 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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Drug Trafficking
Updated December 7, 2016