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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Cambria County Man Pleads Guilty To Violating Narcotics And Firearms Laws

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. – A resident of Johnstown, Pa., pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of violating federal narcotics and firearms laws, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

Eugene Albert Harris, Jr., 38, pleaded guilty to two counts before United States District Judge Kim R. Gibson.

In connection with the guilty plea, on May 31, 2013, Harris distributed less than 100 grams of heroin, and he was found in possession of a NOR, Model SKS, 7.62 x 39 caliber rifle, and a Jennings Bryco Arms, Model 59, 9 mm caliber pistol. On Apr. 25, 2003, Harris was convicted in Indiana Co., Pa., of drug trafficking, which is a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year. Federal law prohibits persons who have been convicted of a crime punishable by a term of imprisonment exceeding one year from possessing firearms.

Judge Gibson scheduled sentencing for April 2, 2015, at 11 a.m. The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 30 years in prison, a fine of $1,250,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history of the defendant.

Assistant United States Attorney Stephanie L. Haines is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Laurel Highlands Resident Agency of the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Cambria County Drug Task Force conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Harris.

According to Mr. Hickton, Harris is being prosecuted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a collaborative effort by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors and communities to prevent, deter and prosecute gun crime.

Updated July 14, 2015