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Press Release

Pittsburgh Man Sentenced as Part of Drug Conspiracy

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

PITTSBURGH -A former resident of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, was sentenced in federal court to 12 months’ imprisonment, plus three years of supervised release, on his conviction of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute heroin and fentanyl, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today. Mr. Harley is the second of 36 defendants to be sentenced in connection with this large-scale drug trafficking case, investigated by the Greater Pittsburgh Safe Streets Task Force.

United States District Judge William S. Stickman, IV imposed sentence on Kyleif Harley, 28.

According to information presented to the Court, in 2017, the Greater Pittsburgh Safe Streets Task Force initiated an investigation primarily targeting the Darccide/Smash 44, or DS44, neighborhood gang, and drug-trafficking activity in and around the South Side area of Pittsburgh. As part of this large-scale narcotics and firearms investigation, in February of 2019, the United States received authorization to conduct a federal wire investigation, which continued through June of 2019.

Intercepted communications demonstrated that Harley possessed and distributed heroin and fentanyl, and communicated directly with his co-defendant, Christopher Highsmith, who was among the leaders of the drug trafficking conspiracy, in order to develop his drug trafficking business. The court was further informed that during a traffic stop of Harley near Philadelphia on August 1, 2018, law enforcement officials seized 261 stamps bags of heroin, over 60 pills that tested positive for various forms of fentanyl, and items related to narcotics distribution that were purchased in the Western District of Pennsylvania. Harley later pleaded guilty to state charges that stemmed from the traffic stop. Harley has been detained in federal custody on his federal charge since July 25, 2019.

Assistant United States Attorney Christy C. Wiegand prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation led the multi-agency investigation of this case, which also included the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, Allegheny County Adult Probation, Allegheny County Police Department, Allegheny County Sheriff’s Office, Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office Bureau of Narcotics, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, and the Wilkinsburg Police Department. Other assisting agencies include the Green Tree Police Department, New York City Police Department, Mount Oliver Police Department, Pennsylvania State Police, Yonkers Police Department, United States Marshals Fugitive Task Force, and the United States Postal Inspection Service.

The investigation was funded by the federal Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force Program (OCDETF). The OCDETF program supplies critical federal funding and coordination that allows federal and state agencies to work together to successfully identify, investigate, and prosecute major interstate and international drug trafficking organizations and other criminal enterprises.

Updated May 11, 2020

Drug Trafficking