PITTSBURGH – A former Washington County, PA resident has been sentenced in federal court to 10 years of imprisonment and 5 years of supervised release on her conviction for violating the federal narcotics laws, Acting United States Attorney Stephen R. Kaufman announced today.
Senior United States District Judge Joy Flowers Conti imposed the sentence on Breanna M. Bane, 29, formerly of Fredericktown, Washington County, PA, who pleaded guilty in May 2020 to conspiring with codefendants Harvey Hicks and Matthew Pearson to distribute 400 grams or more of fentanyl and 100 grams or more of heroin between March 2019 and May 2019. While on bond for that offense, a grand jury returned an Indictment charging Bane with distributing a quantity of fentanyl analogue on July 3, 2020; Bane pled guilty to that offense on April 27, 2021.
According to information presented to the Court, beginning in March 2019, agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Pennsylvania State Police began investigating Bane and her codefendants, whom agents believed to be large-scale distributors of heroin and fentanyl in the Western District of Pennsylvania. Through various investigative methods, agents determined that Bane, Hicks, and Pearson were trafficking large quantities of heroin-fentanyl mixtures from the Harrisburg and Hershey, PA areas to the Western District of Pennsylvania for redistribution. On May 1, 2019, agents interdicted Bane and her codefendants following a trip to Hershey, PA, at which time they seized approximately 625 “bricks” – the equivalent of more than 31,000 individual dosage units – of heroin-fentanyl mixtures. Agents seized numerous firearms, ammunition, bulk U.S. currency, and heroin-fentanyl packaging materials from Bane and codefendant Hicks. In connection with her guilty plea, Bane admitted to conspiring with Hicks and Pearson to distribute the heroin-fentanyl mixtures, and that she did so knowing that the drugs were intended for redistribution. In connection with her April 2021 guilty plea, Ms. Bane admitted that on July 3, 2020, she distributed a quantity of fentanyl analogue to a known individual in Washington County, PA, in stamp bags labeled “passion”. In a subsequent search of her residence, troopers seized “passion” stamp bags and a large sum of U.S. currency. Chemical testing determined that the “passion” stamp bags contained fentanyl analogues, which are scheduled controlled substances.
Assistant United States Attorney Jerome A. Moschetta prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.
Acting United States Attorney Kaufman commended the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Pennsylvania State Police Drug Law Enforcement Division, and the Pennsylvania State Police Troop-B Vice Unit for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Bane.