Former Monroe County Man Sentenced To 210 Months’ Imprisonment For Drug Distribution Resulting In Death

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FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

SCRANTON —The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Nathaniel Speaks, age 46, formerly of Tobyhanna, Monroe County, Pennsylvania, was sentenced on April 28, 2022, by U.S. District Court Judge Robert D. Mariani to 210 months’ imprisonment for drug distribution resulting in death.  Speaks was also ordered to serve 4 years of supervised release upon release from custody.

According to United States Attorney John C. Gurganus, Speaks previously pleaded guilty to drug distribution resulting in death.  Speaks admitted that on March 22, 2020, he sold fentanyl, a Schedule II controlled substance, to a 50-year old female in Coolbaugh Township, Pennsylvania, causing her death. 

The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in Scranton, and the Pocono Mountain Regional Police Department.  Assistant United States Attorney Michelle Olshefski prosecuted the case.

This case was part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime.  Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.  As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.”

This case was also 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 to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who commit heroin related offenses.

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