U.S. Attorney’s Office
December 17, 2015
Southern District of New York
Sullivan County Man Charged in White Plains Federal Court with Distribution of Heroin and Fentanyl Causing the Death of an Individual
Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Diego Rodriguez, the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), James R. Farrell, the Sullivan County District Attorney, and Scott Kinne, the Chief of the Village of Liberty Police Department, announced the filing of a Superseding Indictment charging that TERRENCE JOHNSON, 23, of Sullivan County, distributed heroin and fentanyl, and that the use of the fentanyl caused the overdose death of Malcolm Perry, 35, a resident of Liberty, New York. The Superseding Indictment also charges JOHNSON with multiple additional counts of distributing heroin and fentanyl, conspiring to distribute heroin, and conspiring to distribute crack cocaine. JOHNSON was charged in an initial indictment filed in June 2015, and was previously taken into custody. The Superseding Indictment adds, among other things, the charge against JOHNSON for distributing heroin and fentanyl that resulted in Perry’s death. The case is assigned to U.S. District Judge Cathy Seibel.
U.S. Attorney Bharara stated: “As alleged, Terrence Johnson sold fentanyl-laced heroin in Sullivan County on multiple occasions, including the lethal mixture that killed Malcolm Perry. The heroin epidemic is on the rise and too often having deadly consequences. Thanks to the work of federal, state, and local law enforcement and the Sullivan County DA’s Office, one alleged drug dealer, Terrence Johnson, will be held to account for peddling this poison.”
Sullivan County District Attorney James R. Farrell stated: “I am pleased that our partners in law enforcement on the federal level have used the laws at their disposal to hold accountable a purveyor of dangerous drugs that plague the Sullivan County community. Mr. Perry’s untimely death is one of many losses we, as a community, have suffered as a result of the distribution of heroin and fentanyl by those who seek to profit from others’ addictions. This indictment demonstrates the benefit to Sullivan County that results from combining our resources with those of the federal government, and evaluating laws available on the state and federal levels to determine the best method of prosecution for offenders like this. Without this teamwork, this defendant may not have been charged with acts resulting in Mr. Perry’s death, because of the lack of laws on the state level which contemplate such conduct. I am proud of the partnership between my office, our local law enforcement agencies, federal law enforcement agencies, and the United States Attorney’s Office, and I look forward to our continued collaboration. I applaud Mr. Bharara’s decision to move forward on these charges.”
FBI Assistant Director-in-Charge Rodriguez stated: “Those who engage in the distribution of illegal drugs destroy our communities and ruin lives. In this case, Johnson’s actions were directly responsible for the overdose death of another individual. The FBI and our partners will aggressively pursue any person or organization suspected of bringing these toxic substances to our streets.”
Village of Liberty Police Chief Scott Kinne stated: “I will do everything in my power and use every resource at my disposal to eliminate heroin and fentanyl from the streets of the Village of Liberty, the ongoing cooperation between my department, our local law enforcement partners, federal law enforcement agencies, the Sullivan County District Attorney’s Office and the United States Attorney’s Office should send a clear message to those who continue to threaten the public safety by distributing dangerous drugs: We will stay the course in our endeavor to detect, investigate and apprehend you and bring you to justice.”
According to the allegations in the Superseding Indictment and other information in the public record, As the introductory phrase signifies, the entirety of the text of the Superseding Indictment and the description of the Superseding Indictment set forth herein constitute only allegations, and every fact described should be treated as an allegation. on multiple occasions between May 28, 2015, and June 6, 2015, JOHNSON sold heroin mixed with fentanyl in Sullivan County. Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that is significantly stronger than both ordinary heroin and morphine. One of those sales occurred on or about June 1, 2015. The fentanyl in the drugs sold by Johnson on June 1 caused the death of Malcolm Perry. If convicted of the offense of distributing controlled substances that resulted in death, as charged in Count Four of the Superseding Indictment, JOHNSON faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in prison, and a maximum sentence of life in prison.
The nine-count Superseding Indictment also charges JOHNSON with multiple counts of distribution and possession with intent to distribute controlled substances, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Sections 812, 841(a)(1), and 841(b)(1)(C) (Counts One through Three and Counts Five through Seven); conspiring to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Sections 846 (Count Eight); and conspiring to distribute 280 grams or more of crack cocaine, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 846 (Count Nine).
A chart containing the charges and maximum penalties for each of the counts is set forth below. The maximum potential sentences in this case are prescribed by Congress and are provided here for informational purposes only, as any sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the judge.
Mr. Bharara praised the outstanding investigative work of the FBI, the Village of Liberty Police Department, the New York State Police, the Sullivan County Sheriff’s Department, and the Village of Monticello Police Department. Mr. Bharara also thanked the Sullivan County District Attorney’s Office for its assistance in the case.
The prosecution is being handled by the Office’s White Plains Division. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Anden Chow and Michael Gerber are in charge of the prosecution.
The charges contained in the Superseding Indictment are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.
CHARGE MAXIMUM PENALTY
Counts One, Two, Three, Five, Six, and Seven
Distribution and Possession with Intent to Distribute controlled substances, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Sections 812, 841(a)(1), and 841(b)(1)(C)
20 years in prison for each count
Distribution of controlled substances resulting in death, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Sections 812, 841(a)(1), and 841(b)(1)(C)
Life in prison
Mandatory minimum: 20 years in prison
Conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 846
40 years in prison
Mandatory minimum: Five years in prison