Two Area Men Sentenced for Roles in Federal ‘Return to Sender’ Drug Investigation

| January 20, 2023

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Two Pennsylvania men have been sentenced on their convictions for violating federal narcotics laws related to a nine-month Title III wiretap investigation into drug trafficking in and around the counties of Jefferson, Clearfield, and Allegheny, United States Attorney Cindy K. Chung announced on Thursday, January 19.

United States District Judge Christy Criswell Wiegand imposed a sentence of 24 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on Darryl Isaacs, age 57, of Punxsutawney, Pennsylvania. According to information presented to the court, Isaacs transported approximately 50 kilograms of marijuana and 250 grams of cocaine between distributors based in the Western District of Pennsylvania.

Judge Wiegand also sentenced Brandon Coder, age 34, of Penfield, Pennsylvania, to 41 months of imprisonment followed by three years of supervised release. According to information presented to the court, Coder received parcels that were shipped from California to the Western District of California containing a total of between 1.5 kilograms and five kilograms of methamphetamine. Coder also mailed parcels containing United States currency to California at the direction of Derek Hillebrand, the leader of the drug trafficking organization.

Assistant United States Attorneys Jonathan D. Lusty and Michael R. Ball prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

The Drug Enforcement Administration led the multi-agency investigation of this case, which also included the Homeland Security Investigations, United States Postal Service – Office of Inspector General, United States Postal Inspection Service, Internal Revenue Services, Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, Allegheny County Police, and Pennsylvania State Police. Also assisting were the Jefferson County District Attorney’s Office, Clearfield County District Attorney’s Office, and the Clarion Borough Police Department.

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.

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Jacob Deemer is a reporter for EYT Media Group, who is based out of Venango County. He started his career as a sports writer for a local newspaper before contributing to as a beat writer for the Pittsburgh Penguins. He has spent over 6 years covering sports, crime, and local news in Venango, Clarion, and Jefferson Counties.
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