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Law Enforcement Charge 19 Individuals With Drug Trafficking

Lucy Perkins
90.5 WESA
U.S. Attorney Scott Brady announces charges Monday.

The U.S. Department of Justice charged 19 individuals associated with the local gang “Hustlas Don't Sleep” with drug trafficking Monday. The gang primarily operated in McKeesport, Turtle Creek, Wilkinsburg and Monroeville and sold fentanyl, crack cocaine, heroin and other substances in Allegheny County.

“Law enforcement seized over $130,000, 410 bricks of heroin and fentanyl which equates to approximately 22,500 doses, and 22 firearms, four of which were stolen,” said U.S. Attorney Scott Brady. 

Monday's charges were carried out by a federal and local task force, including the Monroeville Police Department, targeting drug trafficking. 

“Last year, Allegheny, Beaver and Washington counties were designated as High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas,” said FBI Pittsburgh Special Agent in Charge Robert Jones. “Today’s arrests are just one example of the work the Allegheny County HIDTA Task Force is doing to rid the community of dangerous drugs and destructive behavior.”

Seventeen of the suspects are in custody, one is a fugitive and authorities declined to comment on the status of the 19th individual, whose case is under seal. 

“For those young people who feel this type of lifestyle or activity is attractive, exciting and profitable – it is not. Those arrested in the last six months, if convicted and sentenced will serve considerable jail time.”

Law enforcement says their work targeting local gangs has made the region safer. FBI statistics show that firearm related violent crime was down by 25 percent in Allegheny County from 2017 to 2018.