U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Pennsylvania
(717) 221-4482
September 9, 2014

Wilkes-Barre Man Charged with Drug Trafficking Offense

The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today the filing of a criminal information charging Shawn Morse, age 42, of Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, with distributing cocaine on numerous occasions between 2010 and April 2, 2013.

United States Attorney Peter Smith stated that the charge is the result of an investigation conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Pennsylvania Attorney General’s Office; and the Luzerne County District Attorney’s Office. Prosecution is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney John Gurganus.

Indictments and Criminal Informations are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.

A sentence following a finding of guilty is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

In this particular case, the maximum penalty under the federal statute is twenty years’ imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant’s educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.

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