Wiretap of Cedar Rapids Heroin and Fentanyl Distributors Lands Vinton Man in Federal Prison for Nearly Four Years

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

A man who conspired to distribute heroin, fentanyl, and other synthetic opioids was sentenced today to more than three years in federal prison.

Ryan Rick Schlitter, age 39, from Vinton, Iowa, received the prison term after a January 14, 2022 guilty plea to one count of conspiracy to distribute heroin.

In a plea agreement, Schlitter admitted that he obtained distribution quantities of heroin through a group of heroin dealers based out of Cedar Rapids.  During a federal wiretap investigation in 2021, investigators intercepted calls between one of the dealers and an associate of Schlitter’s.  After the intercepted calls, Schlitter and his associate drove to meet with the dealer.  The associate purchased over seven grams of a substance containing heroin, fentanyl, and the synthetic opioids acetyl fentanyl, para‑fluorofentanyl, and metonitazene.  Officers stopped the vehicle and seized the drugs, which Schlitter admitted that he possessed and intended to distribute to others.  Schlitter also admitted that, in June 2021, he sold $200 worth of a substance containing heroin, acetyl fentanyl, and fentanyl during an undercover operation in Cedar Rapids.

Schlitter was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams.  Schlitter was sentenced to 46 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.

Schlitter is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Task Force consisting of the DEA; the Linn County Sheriff’s Office; the Cedar Rapids Police Department; the Marion Police Department; and the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Dan Chatham.  

Court file information at https://ecf.iand.uscourts.gov/cgi-bin/login.pl

The case file number is 21‑CR‑00032‑10‑CJW‑MAR.

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