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Justice News

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

Friday, July 14, 2017

Wilkes-Barre Men Charged In Running Meth Lab

SCRANTON - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that Mark Heath, age 38 and Shawn Melleski, age 26, both of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, were indicted on July 11, 2017, by a federal grand jury for methamphetamine trafficking offenses.


The indictment was unsealed on July 13, 2017, following Melleski’s arrest. Heath’s arraignment is scheduled for July 18, 2017, before United States Magistrate Judge Karoline Mehalchick. Melleski was arraigned by Magistrate Judge Mehalchick on July 13, 2017, and was ordered detained pending trial.


According to United States Attorney Bruce D. Brandler, the indictment alleges that Heath and Melleski possessed with the intent to distribute more than 50 grams of methamphetamine in June 2017.


The charges stem from an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Wilkes-Barre Police Department, the Kingston Police Department and the Pennsylvania State Police. Assistant United States Attorney Evan Gotlob is prosecuting the case.


Indictments 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 defendants are facing a mandatory minimum of five years and maximum of 40 years in prison and a $5,000,000 maximum fine and lifetime maximum supervised release. 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 July 14, 2017