A Berks County man will spend decades in federal prison for organizing and running a drug ring from his Muhlenberg Township house that trafficked the opioid painkiller fentanyl on the streets throughout Berks, Montgomery, Lehigh, and Lancaster counties, federal authorities stated.

David Cooper, 47, was sentenced to 32 years in prison and eight years of supervised release. U.S. District Court Judge Joseph F. Leesson Jr. also ordered Cooper to pay a $2,000 fine. This means he will be about 80 if he makes it out, although, with good time, he may be in his upper 70’s when he sees release.

David Cooper Pleads Guilty

David Cooper Operation Poison Control

Cooper pled guilty in September, just before the trial was to begin, to charges including conspiracy to distribute fentanyl, cocaine, and crack cocaine; possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense; and possessing a firearm by a convicted felon.

Cooper and two other men were first detained in June 2018 by Montgomery County police and FBI agents as part of the “ Operation Poison Control” wiretap operation to take down large-scale drug traffickers, officials said.

At the time, Cooper resided on the 1000 block of Saylor Drive, just north of Reading in Muhlenberg Township.

Montgomery County District Attorney Kevin R. Steele claimed at the time that Cooper and his co-defendants were a major supplier of fentanyl and cocaine that resulted in fatalities and addictions that harmed many individuals in the region.

As a consequence of intensive surveillance and the intercepted telephone calls, federal authorities claimed, Cooper was discovered trying to refill his organization with 200 grams of fentanyl, enough for more than 6,000 individual doses.

Coopers Co-Defendents

Miguel Figueroa Jr

During the same operation, Cooper’s drug customer, Comese Robinson, 42, of Pottstown was also arrested and eventually convicted of identical offenses in Montgomery County Court. Robinson was sentenced in December to 7 ½ to 15 years in state prison.

Robinson’s state co-defendant, Miguel Figueroa, Jr., 37, of Reading, was convicted on similar counts in Montgomery County Court and was sentenced to 18 to 40 years in state prison.

Edwin Andino

Federal prosecutors took over the case against Cooper and his co-defendant, Edwin Andino, 39, of Allentown, who was convicted on identical counts and sentenced to 18 years in federal prison.

“This case is an outstanding example of all levels of law enforcement partnering to destroy a dangerous drug-trafficking network placing lethal drugs on streets all over the Eastern District of Pennsylvania,” U.S. Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams stated in a press statement.

“Cooper directly harmed the safety of his neighbors in Reading, and all communities in our district, via his hazardous and illegal activities, for which he will now spend over three decades behind bars.”

My Thoughts

In the end, it’s just another grain of sand of the beach. U.S. Attorney Williams can placate to the media all she wants’s the fact that these men killed no one and were given such insane sentences is not indicative of the “damage they did” but rather the draconian laws that exist.

At the end of the day, everyone has free will. It’s been shown time and time again that prohibition does not work. This applies to cannabis as much as anything else. Putting people in prison for multiple decades for the crime of drug trafficking will just allow the next person to fill that void, and in a few months, or years we will be hearing about yet another ‘kingpin’ in the Berks County area.

Nine times out of ten cases are not cracked by the:

outstanding example of all levels of law enforcement partnering to destroy a dangerous drug-trafficking network

U.S. Attorney Williams

But rather by one person who is threatened with prison time and cannot take it, and therefore decides it would be prudent to instead of paying for their own crime, put others in a box. Typically, because they are to scared to do their own time.

Source: TimesHerald