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Press Release

Philadelphia Man Stopped by State Police on the PA Turnpike Pleads to Heroin Possession Charge

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

PITTSBURGH - A Philadelphia resident pleaded guilty in federal court to violating federal narcotics laws, United States Attorney Cindy K. Chung announced today.

Cristobal Rosa-Robles, 51, pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, before United States District Judge J. Nicholas Ranjan.

In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that, on March 27, 2019, a Trooper with the Pennsylvania State Police stopped Mr. Rosa-Robles’ vehicle for traffic violations as he drove eastbound on the Pennsylvania Turnpike. After speaking with Mr. Rosa-Robles, the Trooper believed that he may be involved in drug trafficking, so the Trooper asked for his consent to search his vehicle. Mr. Rosa-Robles voluntarily consented to a search of his vehicle. The Trooper searched Mr. Rosa-Robles’ vehicle and discovered an aftermarket hidden compartment that contained approximately 400 bricks, or 20,000 dosage units, of a mixture of heroin; fentanyl; valeryl fentanyl, a fentanyl analogue; and methamphetamine.

Judge Ranjan scheduled sentencing for August 8, 2022. The law provides for a total sentence of not less than five years and up to 40 years of imprisonment, a fine not to exceed $5,000,000, 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, if any, of the defendant. Mr. Rosa-Robles remains detained pending sentencing.

Assistant United States Attorney Mark V. Gurzo is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Pennsylvania State Police conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Mr. Rosa-Robles.

Updated April 5, 2022

Drug Trafficking