Cleveland Man sentenced to 33 months in prison for conspiring to launder drug proceeds while incarcerated in West Virginia


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Date: March 26, 2021


PITTSBURGH — Lamar Middleton was sentenced to 33 months in prison for conspiring to launder drug-trafficking proceeds between 2017 and 2019, Acting United States Attorney Stephen R. Kaufman announced today.

Middleton of Cleveland, Ohio, was sentenced by United States District Judge J. Nicholas Ranjan. Judge Ranjan directed that the prison sentence be served consecutively to the federal prison sentence Middleton was serving for heroin and cocaine trafficking at the time of the crime.

Middleton was incarcerated at FCI-Hazelton in West Virginia when he conspired to launder the proceeds of the distribution of Schedule I synthetic cannabinoid controlled substances. Such substances have caused severe illness and deaths throughout the United States in recent years.

Assistant United States Attorney Craig W. Haller prosecuted this case on behalf of the United States.

The Internal Revenue Service – Criminal Investigation, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, and the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General led the multi-agency investigation that also included the United States Postal Inspection Service, the Beaver County District Attorney's Office, the Department of Homeland Security/Homeland Security Investigations, the Pittsburgh Police Department, the United States Marshals Service, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Munhall Police Department, the Robinson Township Police Department, the McKees Rocks Police Department, the Stowe Township Police Department, the Etna Police Department, and the Erie County District Attorney's Office.

This prosecution is a result of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles high-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten communities throughout the United States. OCDETF uses a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks.