Monroeville pair accused of scheming to sell heroin/fentanyl mix | TribLIVE.com
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Monroeville pair accused of scheming to sell heroin/fentanyl mix

Natasha Lindstrom
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In this Oct. 22, 2018 file photo, a fentanyl user holds a needle near Kensington and Cambria in Philadelphia. Deaths from the powerful painkiller fentanyl and its close opioid cousins continued to soar in 2017.

Two Monroeville residents are accused of conspiring with a Somerset County man to sell a mixture of fentanyl and heroin to addicts in Western Pennsylvania, federal prosecutors said Wednesday.

A grand jury in Pittsburgh indicted the three defendants: Harvey G. Hicks, 49, and Breanna M. Bane, 27, both of Monroeville, and Matthew L. Pearson, 44, of Somerset.

From March until May 1 of this year, the defendants are accused of scheming to obtain and distribute more than 400 grams of fentanyl — nearly a pound’s worth — and more than 100 grams of heroin, U.S. Attorney Scott W. Brady said.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid painkiller that can be 50 to 100 times stronger than heroin. As little as 2 or 3 nanograms of fentanyl per milliliter of blood can be deadly.

All three defendants face federal drug and conspiracy charges.

Hicks also is charged with unlawfully possessing four guns and ammunition on May 1. He is prohibited from doing so because he is a felon.

If convicted in this case, Hicks could face a sentence of at least 15 years in prison, Brady said.

His co-defendants, Bane and Pearson, could face at least 10 years in prison.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jerome A. Moschetta is prosecuting the case with help from the FBI and state police.

Natasha Lindstrom is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Natasha at 412-380-8514, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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