U.S. Attorney's Office
Western District of Pennsylvania
December 10, 2015

Seventeen Charged in Cocaine Trafficking Ring

PITTSBURGH—Seventeen people have been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges of violating federal narcotics and firearms laws, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today. The seven-count indictment named:

  • William J. Chaffin Jr., 48, of Adah, Pa., 15410;
  • Semori Wilson, 45, formerly of Uniontown, Pa., 15458;
  • Domin Guerrero-Guerrero, 32, of Lebanon, Pa., 17042;
  • Dexter Allen, 27, of Uniontown, Pa., 15401;
  • George Daube, 59, of Donora, Pa., 15033;
  • Chalfonte Demery, 34, of McKeesport, Pa., 15132;
  • Damien Gibson, 41, of Duquesne, Pa., 15110;
  • Peter Hawkins, 44, of McKeesport, Pa., 15132;
  • Richard Lassic, 41, of Washington, Pa., 15301;
  • Marquis Bailey, 24, of Uniontown, Pa., 15401;
  • Tomarrio Blackburn, 33, McClellandtown, Pa., 15458;
  • Anitra Dues, 38, of Adah, Pa., 15410;
  • Brandon Harrison, 29, of McClellandtown, Pa., 15458;
  • Mark Johnson, 28, of Uniontown, Pa., 15401;
  • Keith Thomas, 30, of Uniontown, Pa., 15401;
  • Herbert Ballard, 50, of Pittsburgh, Pa., 15206; and
  • Nygel Saunders, 26, of Uniontown, Pa., 15401.

According to the indictment presented to the court, the defendants named above (except for Herbert Ballard and Nygel Saunders) engaged in a conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute and distribute cocaine from June 2015 to November 2015. Individually, William J. Chaffin Jr., Richard Lassic, Herbert Ballard, and Keith Thomas are charged with possession with intent to distribute and distribution of a quantity of cocaine, while Semori Wilson and Nygel Saunders are charged with possession with intent to distribute and distribution of 500 grams or more of cocaine. William J. Chaffin Jr. is also charged with possessing a firearm after a prior felony conviction.

The law provides for a maximum total sentences ranging of not less than five years in prison and up to life in prison, and fines ranging from $250,000 to up to $8,000,000. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant United States Attorney Barbara K. Doolittle is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, the Allegheny County Sheriff’s Department, and the Allegheny County Police Department conducted the investigation leading to the indictment in this case. The investigation was funded by the federal Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force Program (OCDETF). The OCDETF program supplies critical federal funding and coordination that allows federal and state agencies to work together to successfully identify, investigate, and prosecute major interstate and international drug trafficking organizations and other criminal enterprises.

An indictment is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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