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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of New York

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Buffalo Men Convicted By Federal Jury Of Gun And Drug Charges

CONTACT:      Barbara Burns
PHONE:         (716) 843-5817
FAX:            (716) 551-3051

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that a federal jury has found Isiah Pierce, 34, and Larry Willis, 32, both of Buffalo, NY, guilty of possessing crack cocaine with intent to distribute, maintaining a drug involved premises, possessing firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking activities, and being a felons-in-possession of firearms and explosives. In addition to the foregoing, defendant Pierce was also convicted of possession with intent to distribute cocaine, fentanyl, and butryl fentanyl.      The charges carry a maximum penalty of life in prison.

Assistant U.S. Attorneys Laura A. Higgins and Paul E. Bonanno, who handled the trial of the case, stated that between November 2016 and December 1, 2016, the defendants utilized two apartments inside 70 Henrietta Avenue, Buffalo, New York, to manufacture, package, and store quantities of crack cocaine, heroin, cocaine, fentanyl, and butyryl fentanyl, along with the proceeds for sale of such controlled substances. To protect their product and their proceeds, the defendants maintained multiple firearms and ammunition within each of the apartments.

During the execution of a search warrant in the lower apartment at 70 Henrietta Avenue, officers recovered crack cocaine, three firearms and ammunition, a digital scale with drug residue, packaging material, whisks, spoons, and cutting agents. A subsequent search of the upper apartment uncovered additional amounts of crack cocaine, a mixture of heroin and butyryl fentanyl, three handguns and numerous rounds of ammunition.

The verdict is the result of an investigation by the Erie County Sheriff’s Office, under the direction of Sheriff Timothy Howard and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Safe Streets Task Force, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Adam S. Cohen.

Pierce and Willis will be sentenced on March 20, 2018, and March 21, 2018, respectively, before U.S. District Judge Lawrence J. Vilardo, who presided over the trial of the case. 

Updated November 24, 2017