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30 in northwestern Pa. charged with running crystal meth ring

Tony LaRussa
| Tuesday, Sept. 26, 2017, 5:39 a.m.

Thirty people in five northwestern Pennsylvania counties have been charged in connection with the shipment and sale of $1.6 million worth of crystal methamphetamine over an 18-month period, state investigators announced.

The crystal meth was shipped to Jefferson County and the surrounding area through the U.S. mail from drug dealers in Arizona and California, Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro said.

The 35 pounds of meth was broken up into as many as 64,000 ¼-gram and ½-gram doses and then sold by the ring of 30 dealers in Jefferson, Clearfield, Clarion, Elk and Forest counties, Shapiro said.

Most of the drugs were shipped from Larry Dean, 58, who has residences in Mayport, Clarion County, and Tucson, Ariz. The shipments were received by Dale Hanlin, 66, of Cooksburg, Forest County, investigators said.

Authorities used a combination of controlled purchases, electronic surveillance, package interceptions and other tactics to identify the drug dealers involved.

The case was investigated by the state police, U.S. postal inspectors, officers from the attorney general's office and local police.

Suspects were charged with conspiracy, possession with intent to deliver drugs and operating corrupt organizations.

Tony LaRussa is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at 724-772-6368, tlarussa@tribweb.com or via Twitter @TonyLaRussaTrib.

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