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Press Release

Philadelphia Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Prison for Conspiring to Distribute Narcotics and Money Laundering

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

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. – A former resident of Philadelphia, PA, has been sentenced in federal court to a total of 180 months in prison followed by 5 years of supervised release on his convictions of conspiring to distribute methamphetamine, cocaine base, fentanyl, and heroin, as well as conspiring to commit money laundering, Acting United States Attorney Troy Rivetti announced today.

Senior United States District Judge Kim R. Gibson imposed the sentence on James Edwards, age 53, of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

According to information presented to the court, on or about July 5, 2018, to on or about May 5, 2020, Edwards did conspire to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine, 500 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine, 28 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of cocaine base, 40 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of fentanyl, and a quantity of heroin, as well as, conspired to commit money laundering, in the Western District of Pennsylvania. Further, Edwards distributed 50 grams or more of methamphetamine in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

Assistant United States Attorney Arnold P. Bernard, Jr. prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

This prosecution is a result of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles high-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten communities throughout the United States. OCDETF uses a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.

The OCDETF led the prosecution of Edwards. The task force is headed by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Laurel Highlands Resident Agency and is comprised of members drawn from the FBI Safe Streets Task Force, Homeland Security Investigations, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms, the Pennsylvania State Police, and the Indiana Borough Police Department.

Updated April 13, 2023

Drug Trafficking