New Castle Resident Sentenced to More Than 8 Years in Prison for Drug Trafficking and Firearm Violations

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – A resident of New Castle, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced to 97 months in federal prison for drug trafficking and firearm crimes, United States Attorney Eric G. Olshan announced today.

United States Senior District Judge David Stewart Cercone imposed the sentence on Maurice Collier, 33, also ordering Collier to serve three years of supervised release following his prison sentence. Collier previously pleaded guilty in this case to distributing cocaine base on September 17, 2020, and possessing with intent to distribute fentanyl, heroin, methamphetamine, cocaine, and cocaine base, as well as a firearm in furtherance of that drug trafficking crime, on November 4, 2020.

According to information presented to the Court, between September and November 2020, the Lawrence County Drug Task Force made four controlled purchases of cocaine and heroin directly from Collier. On November 4, 2020, the Drug Task Force served a search warrant at Collier’s New Castle residence and found a loaded and stolen pistol, $5,034 in drug trafficking proceeds, and quantities of fentanyl, heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine. Collier was on bond with a pending drug trafficking charge in Pennsylvania state court at the time he committed these crimes. Prior to 2020, Collier had been convicted in New Jersey state court of committing cocaine trafficking and gun crimes and was sentenced to over six years of incarceration.

Assistant United States Attorney Craig W. Haller prosecuted this case on behalf of the United States.

United States Attorney Olshan commended the Lawrence County Drug Task Force, New Castle Police Department, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Collier.

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 gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department of Justice launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

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