A 35-year-old former resident of Bronx, New York has pleaded guilty to charges linked to drug trafficking in federal court, in connection to an extensive investigation carried out by the Greater Pittsburgh Safe Streets Task Force.
Holiday Vaughn, who is one of the 36 defendants charged in the indictment, has pleaded guilty to one count of possession of heroin and fentanyl and one count of conspiracy to distribute or possess with intent to distribute heroin and fentanyl.
Part of A larger Investigation
With regards to the plea, the court was briefed that an investigation was initiated by the Greater Pittsburgh Safe Streets Task Force to solely focus on the Darccide/Smash 44, or DS44, a neighborhood gang, 2017. It dealt with the gang's drug-related activities in the vicinity of the South Side area of Pittsburgh.
In February 2019, authorization was received to conduct a federal wire investigation, as a part of the said large-scale firearms and narcotics investigation. The investigation went on till June 2019.
Recovery of Drugs
The court was told of Vaughn's role as a supplier of fentanyl and heroin to DS44. The authorities intercepted communications between Vaughn, and Christopher Highsmith, a co-conspirator, while they were discussing drug deals.
In addition to this, 23 grams of heroin and fentanyl was recovered from Vaughn during a traffick check on 29 May 2019, when he was on his way to Pittsburgh from New York. He admitted, as a part of his guilty plea, to distributing or possessing, with the intent to distribute in the Pittsburgh area 39 grams of fentanyl and heroin.
Vaughn's sentencing has been set for 8 October 2020 and is detention. Based on the provisions in law his total sentence could amount to not more than 20 years in prison, or a fine of up to $1,000,000, or both.
According to the guidelines of federal sentencing, the actual sentence discharged will be on the basis of the seriousness of the defendants' offense and their previous criminal history if they have any. The considerations individual acknowledged for each of the defendants.