WILLIAMSPORT – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that Joseph Richard, age 26, of Philadelphia, was sentenced on August 6, 2019, to 168 months’ imprisonment by United States District Court Judge Matthew W. Brann, for drug trafficking and money laundering.

According to United States Attorney David J. Freed, from 2015 through 2017, Richard transported bulk heroin from Philadelphia to associates in Danville and Bloomsburg, Pennsylvania, who would then repay Richard using a credit union account he held.

The charges stem from an investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Geoffrey W. MacArthur prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

The case also was 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.