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Press Release

Attorney General Shapiro Announces Seizure of 12,000 Doses of Fentanyl in Luzerne and Lackawanna Counties

January 31, 2019 | Topic: Opioids

Scranton-Area Dealer Charged after Seizure of Cash, Fentanyl, Heroin, and  Crystal Meth from his Wilkes-Barre Apartment

HARRISBURG — Attorney General Josh Shapiro today announced felony charges against a Scranton-area drug dealer after Office of Attorney General agents seized fentanyl, heroin and crystal methamphetamine and more than $34,000 in cash from his Wilkes-Barre apartment.

Osvaldo Gonzalez, 25, of South Grant Street, Wilkes-Barre is charged with felonies of possession with intent to deliver a controlled substance, dealing in proceeds of unlawful activities and other related charges. Since May 2018, confidential informants made several controlled purchases of heroin, fentanyl and crystal methamphetamine from Gonzalez in the City of Scranton. During December 2018, the Office of Attorney General used a second confidential informant to conduct several controlled buys of heroin and fentanyl from the defendant in the Wilkes-Barre area. During the investigation, OAG agents discovered Gonzalez was stashing his supply of drugs at his apartment in Luzerne County.

When arrested, Gonzalez was in possession of 321 bags of fentanyl and $1,750 cash. Upon entering the residence of Gonzalez, agents seized $32,840 cash, 123 grams of bulk fentanyl and large amounts of packaging, scales, stampers and other distribution materials. Of the 123 grams of fentanyl, approximately 12,000 doses with an estimated street value of $42,000 could have been manufactured.

The Attorney General attributes the charges as a result of strong law enforcement collaboration:

“Fentanyl is an incredibly dangerous drug that is plaguing Pennsylvania communities. Thanks to strong law enforcement collaboration, we’ve prevented this dealer from peddling 12,000 more doses of this poison and taken additional heroin and crystal meth off our streets,” Attorney General Shapiro said. “Thank you to the Scranton Police Department, Lackawanna County District Attorney’s Office Detective Division, Wilkes-Barre Police Department, Plains Township Police Department, Luzerne County Drug Task Force and the Lackawanna County Adult Probation Office for their great work on this case.”

The Scranton Police Department Chief Carl Graziano acknowledges how this case effects the opioid epidemic in the local area:

“With today’s opioid epidemic it is even more important that law enforcement agencies partner together to identify and arrest individuals who would bring this deadly poison into our neighborhoods. This arrest is an example of law enforcement working together to do their part to fight this opioid epidemic,” Chief Carl Graziano said.

This case is being prosecuted by Deputy Attorney General William Abraham.

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