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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, June 15, 2015

Texas Woman Pleads Guilty To Bath Salts Conspiracy

     The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania, announced that a 36-year-old Texas woman pleaded guilty today to conspiring with others to distribute and possess with intent to distribute alpha-pvp, commonly known as “bath salts,” before U.S. District Court Judge Malachy E. Mannion in Scranton.

     According to United States Attorney Peter Smith, the defendant, Trieu Thuy Duong, of Houston, Texas, admitted to distributing alpha-pvp to customers in at least 32 states, including Pennsylvania, over various web sites during 2011 through March 2014.

     Trieu Thuy Duong was indicted by a federal grand jury in March 2014, as a result of an investigation by Homeland Security Investigations, the Drug Enforcement Administration, United States Postal Inspectors, the Pennsylvania State Police, and West Pittston Police.

     As part of her plea, the defendant consented to the forfeiture of a residence in Texas valued at approximately $300,000, silver coins valued at more than $260,000, four bank accounts containing over $200,000, two vehicles, over $7000 in cash and more than $17,000 in uncashed money orders, and two firearms.

     Assistant U.S. Attorney Francis P. Sempa is prosecuting the case.

     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 20 years of 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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Updated June 15, 2015