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Press Release

Dunkirk Man Pleads Guilty To Drug Charges Involving An Overdose That Led To A Death

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of New York

BUFFALO, N.Y. - U.S. Attorney Trini E. Ross announced today that Bruce Massara, 57, of Dunkirk, NY, who was convicted of possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of, 10 grams or more of butyryl fentanyl, was sentenced to serve 120 months in prison by Senior U.S. District Judge William M. Skretny.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael J. Adler, who handled the case, stated that in August 2018, the FBI began investigating Massara’s narcotics trafficking activities. The investigation determined that his distribution of heroin and fentanyl analogs was linked with several overdoses:

  • In March 2017, the Amherst Police Department and first responders were called to a residence in Williamsville, where they located L.B. on the ground, unconscious and unresponsive. L.B. appeared to have overdosed but was revived with Narcan and survived. Massara was present at the scene and prior to L.B.’s overdose, Massara provided L.B. with heroin.
  • In November 2017, the Amherst Police Department and first responders were again called to the Williamsville residence, where they located S.D., who was pronounced dead at the scene. The previous evening, Massara provided heroin, fentanyl, butyryl fentanyl and furanyl fentanyl to S.D., who then overdosed.
  • In November 2018, Massara provided heroin and fentanyl to L.B. at the same Williamsville residence. After taking the mixture, L.B. lost consciousness but Massara administered Narcan to L.B. and revived him.

The investigation also included a controlled purchase of narcotics from Massara. Following his arrest on May 23, 2019, while incarcerated at the Niagara County Jail, Massara directed a third party to destroy a personal journal containing entries related to, among others, the overdoses of S.D. and L.B.

The sentencing is the result of an investigation by the Amherst Police Department under the direction of Chief Scott Chamberlin and the Federal bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Matthew Miraglia.  

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Barbara Burns


Updated June 20, 2023

Drug Trafficking