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Duquesne man acquitted of drug charges sues FBI agent for malicious prosecution

| Monday, Dec. 9, 2013, 11:30 a.m.

A Duquesne man acquitted in December 2011 on drug charges claims that an FBI agent had him arrested and prosecuted for no other reason than he was friends with and related to convicted drug dealers.

Frank M. Cobb, 32, says in the civil rights lawsuit that Special Agent Minh-Tri V. Truong had no evidence linking him to drug trafficking and that he or someone else on the task force destroyed evidence that would have helped prove his innocence.

One of Cobb's childhood friends and two cousins were arrested in the same drug sweep and pleaded guilty to drug charges.

A federal jury on Dec. 9, 2011, acquitted Cobb on charges of drug conspiracy, operating a drug house and possessing a firearm in connection with drug trafficking. He spent a year in jail awaiting trial.

Cobb had security cameras on his home and tried to get Truong and other members of the task force to review the footage to see that no drug trafficking was taking place, the lawsuit says.

“At some point, after the illegal search and seizure of the plaintiff's home, after the plaintiff insisted defendants review the security footage and after the defendants, without good cause or excuse, refused to review that footage, the memory on plaintiff's security system was mysteriously wiped clean,” the lawsuit says.

Cobb's attorney, Joel Sansone, couldn't be reached. FBI spokeswoman Kelly Kochamba declined comment.

Brian Bowling is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-325-4301 or bbowling@tribweb.com.

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