Heroin dealer with ties to Pittsburgh, Penn Hills, McKees Rocks gets 7 1/2 years in prison | TribLIVE.com
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Natasha Lindstrom

A former Pittsburgh resident who pleaded guilty to dealing heroin will spend 7 1/2 years behind bars for drug and firearms violations, federal prosecutors said Thursday.

Maurice Dewayne Tinsley Jr., 38, who has ties to Penn Hills, McKees Rocks and Pittsburgh’s North Side, was convicted of plotting to sell heroin and possessing a gun for use in drug trafficking, U.S. Attorney Scott W. Brady said.

The charges stemmed from a search warrant served at Tinsley’s residence in July 2016 that turned up 40 to 60 grams of heroin and stamp bags, the packets used to sell heroin, along with multiple guns, ammunition, cell phones and $14,400 in cash, prosecutors said.

Tinsley must forfeit all of the cash seized by the Drug Enforcement Administration as part of his sentence, Brady said.

He was prohibited from owning a gun as a felon.

Tinsley’s prior crimes include a 2012 conviction for heroin trafficking and a 2010 charge for illegally possessing a firearm.

During the sentencing hearing at the federal courthouse in Downtown Pittsburgh, U.S. District Judge Mark R. Hornak told Tinsley that guns and drugs have a “toxic” and “deadly” effect on society, according to Brady.

Tinsley had faced a maximum possible sentence of up to life in prison and a $4.5 million fine.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Ross E. Lenhardt and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Chad R. Parks of the Beaver County District Attorney’s Office prosecuted the case.

The DEA led the investigation with help from state police and police from Pittsburgh, Penn Hills, Canonsburg, Donora, Robinson and Coraopolis.

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