Greensburg-based drug ring gets 2 men decades in prison
By Rich Cholodofsky
Published: Saturday, Oct. 5, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
Two men convicted in June of operating a multimillion-dollar drug ring based in Greensburg were sentenced on Friday to years in prison.
Visiting Senior Judge Paul H. Millin of Warren County sentenced James Moore, 26, of Smithton, who prosecutors said was the ringleader of the organization, to 20 to 40 years in prison.
Moore's top lieutenant, Dominick Haynes, 26, of McKeesport, was sentenced to serve 12 to 30 years in prison.
“I have no doubt if you were released today you would go back into the trade, and I can't tolerate that,” Millin told Moore. “You are destroying life. You stay in business and profit from misery.”
After a six-day trial in June, a Westmoreland County jury convicted Moore of 16 counts, including charges that he operated a corrupt organization.
Authorities said the drug ring operated throughout Westmoreland County during a two-year period.
Haynes was found guilty of eight offenses, including similar racketeering charges.
Prosecutors said the men were key players in the drug-trafficking ring that stretched from New Jersey to Western Pennsylvania.
According to police, the group sold hundreds of bricks of heroin every week, earning $50,000 on those sales. It generated more than $1.2 million during a six-month period, said Assistant District Attorney James Lazar.
At trial, Lazar described the drug operation as an organized business with a structure and a marketing effort to lure heroin addicts.
The group operated in the Greensburg, Mt. Pleasant and Latrobe areas in 2010 and 2011. Moore was one of several men who routinely traveled to New Jersey to bring drugs into the area, Lazar said at trial.
In court on Friday, Lazar asked for lengthy sentences for Moore and Haynes.
“What they're doing is peddling life and death, and it's devastating to the county and society in general. No amount of time is enough for what they've done,” Lazar said.
Moore and Haynes were among 20 men and women charged in connection with the drug-trafficking ring. The pair are the only defendants whose cases have gone to trial. Most of the remaining defendants are expected to plead guilty, and many have cooperated with prosecutors and testified against Moore and Haynes.
Millin is scheduled to conduct a nonjury trial for Tyrone Leonard, 22, of Pittsburgh on Oct. 16. Leonard also faces murder charges in Allegheny County.
Rich Cholodofsky is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-830-6293 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Jeannette dirt bike rider collides with car
- No apology from Greensburg driver in DUI death
- Mt. Pleasant Area School District looks to hire assistant superintendent
- Mt. Pleasant Rotary makes donations to community organizations
- Yukon Pet Adoption League, founder settle spat
- Hempfield couple charged in thefts
- Donegal American Legion Post 941 helps nonprofits
- Westmoreland County Controller Balzer, IRS at odds
- Penn-Trafford board promotes Inglese
- Tax refund promise led Ligonier teacher to second career as corgi breeder
- Ligonier man charged with harassing estranged wife