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5 in Armstrong County among drug ring suspects

| Friday, May 30, 2014, 1:16 a.m.
Guy Wathen | Tribune-Review
U.S. Attorney David Hickton holds a news conference on Thursday, May 29, 2014, in the FBI's headquarters in the South Side.

Five Armstrong County residents were among those arrested on heroin charges Thursday in a federal drug sweep named “Bricks R Us.”

“This was part of a ripple down effect,” said Armstrong County Sheriff Bill Rupert, whose department assisted the FBI with the bust. “These people were getting heroin from dealers in the city.”

Rupert and his deputies headed out at 6 a.m. to make the arrests. They teamed up with Kittanning police and Armstrong County Narcotics Taskforce to assist federal agents.

“We had intelligence about their whereabouts,” Rupert said about the suspects arrested.

One of those arrested, Charles Blystone, was in the Armstrong County Jail charged with selling heroin to a law enforcement informant when he was served papers on the new charges. Those charges, according to the Department of Justice, include one count of possession with intent to distribute less than 100 grams of heroin.

Michael Cox was arrested in Kittanning Borough on charges of conspiring with others to possess and distribute one kilogram or more of heroin.

Agents arrested Travis Anthony in Wayne on charges of possession of a firearm by a drug user or addict.

William Smith and Miranda Rosenberger were each arrested in East Kittanning. Both are charged with conspiring with others to possess with intent to distribute one kilogram of heroin. Smith is also charged with carrying a firearm during a drug trafficking crime.

Current addresses of those arrested were not included in a Department of Justice news release about the bust.

“Everybody was taken without incident,” Rupert said. “Miranda ran, but was apprehended within minutes.”

All those arrested — except for Blystone — were taken by agents to Pittsburgh.

“Marshals will be getting him at a later date,” Rupert said.

Brigid Beatty is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.

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