Maine Resident Pleads Guilty To Participating In A Multi-State Heroin Trafficking Conspiracy Based In Stroudsburg
Wednesday, October 5, 2016
SCRANTON - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that a 22-year-old Maine resident pleaded guilty today before U.S. District Court Judge Malachy E. Mannion in Scranton, to participating in a heroin trafficking conspiracy that stretched from Stroudsburg to New York to the state of Maine.
According to United States Attorney Bruce D. Brandler, the defendant, Ricquell Lindo, who used the street name “Snaxx,” admitted to conspiring with others to sell heroin between 2010 and 2015. Lindo admitted responsibility for distributing between 100 grams and 700 grams of heroin during the conspiracy, which is approximately equivalent to between 3,300 and 21,000 retail bags of heroin.
Lindo was indicted along with six other people by a federal grand jury in Scranton in September 2015, as a result of an investigation by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Pennsylvania State Police, Maine State Police, the Monroe County District Attorney’s Office, and local police in Monroe County.
The indictment alleges that Lindo and his co-defendants participated in a street gang known as the Black P-Stones, obtained heroin from suppliers in New York, and distributed the heroin in Stroudsburg and locations in the state of Maine. According to the indictment, couriers were used to transport heroin to Maine, where Lindo and others distributed it to customers.
Lindo faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and a potential maximum sentence of 40 years in prison. Judge Mannion will schedule sentencing after completion of a pre-sentence investigation and report.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Francis P. Sempa is prosecuting the case.
This case was brought as part of a district wide initiative to combat the nationwide epidemic regarding the use and distribution of heroin. Led by the United States Attorney’s Office, the heroin initiative targets heroin traffickers operating in the Middle District of Pennsylvania and is part of a coordinated effort among federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.
A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.
The maximum penalty under federal law is 40 years’ imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.