JOHNSTOWN — A former resident of New Florence and Indiana pleaded guilty in federal court Wednesday to a charge of violating federal narcotics laws.
Acting United States Attorney Stephen R. Kaufman said Nicholas Beard, 28, pleaded guilty to a count of an indictment before U.S. District Judge Kim R. Gibson in the regional district courthouse in Johnstown.
In connection with the guilty plea, Assistant U.S. Attorney Arnold P. Bernard Jr. said, on or about Oct. 9, 2020, Beard did possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine, and a quantity of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of fentanyl.
Beard was listed as a New Florence resident by the U.S. Attorney’s office. On Oct. 9, 2020, Beard was living in Indiana when he and Ruby Ann Gil, now 30, were arrested by Indiana Borough police, as part of the Indiana County Drug Task Force.
In a news release, Indiana County District Attorney Robert F. Manzi Jr. said $30,000 worth of drugs and money were seized from a house along the 500 block of Church Street.
In August, Gil was among 31 arrested on charges of violating narcotics laws in a sweep that focused on Cambria and Indiana counties. At the time, Indiana County court records gave her a Johnstown address.
On Oct. 8 of this year, before Indiana County Common Pleas President Judge Thomas M. Bianco, Gil pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a controlled substance in a June 2020 case out of Indiana Borough.
She is scheduled for sentencing Nov. 1 at 8:30 a.m. before Indiana County Common Pleas Judge Michael T. Clark, and has been lodged in the Indiana County Jail.
As for Beard, Gibson scheduled sentencing for Feb. 16 at 9:30 a.m.
The U.S. Attorney’s office said the law provides for 5 to 40 years in prison, and/or a fine of up to $5 million, based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Kaufman said the FBI Laurel Highlands Resident Agency, Southwest Pennsylvania Safe Streets Task Force and Indiana County Drug Task Force led the prosecution of Beard.