Former Pittsburgh Resident Pleads Guilty in Fentanyl Trafficking Conspiracy

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Fentanyl and opioid crisis in United States of America

PITTSBURGH – An inmate of SCI Pine Grove, Indiana, Pennsylvania pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute a quantity of fentanyl, United States Attorney Cindy K. Chung announced today.

Delrico Shields age 26, formerly of Glenwood Avenue, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, pled guilty on January 21, 2022, before U.S. District Judge W. Scott Hardy.

Shields was originally charged along with 23 others following a four-month Title III wiretap investigation into drug trafficking, violence, and firearms violations in and around the Hazelwood neighborhood in Pittsburgh. According to information provided to the court, during various points in the time frame listed in the indictment—from in and around August of 2019 and continuing thereafter to in and around August of 2021—Shields conspired to distribute a quantity of fentanyl.

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Sentencing is scheduled for May 26, 2022. The law provides for a maximum total sentence of 20 years in prison, a fine of not more than $1,000,000, and a term of supervised release of at least three years. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant United States Attorney Nicole Vasquez Schmitt is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, Munhall Police Department, Pennsylvania State Police, Allegheny County Sheriff’s Office, the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General, and Whitehall Police Department conducted the investigation leading to the Indictment of Shields.

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This prosecution is a result of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles high-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten communities throughout the United States. OCDETF uses a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.


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