A federal grand jury has indicted multiple people in the deaths of six people from suspected heroin and fentanyl overdoses.
The indictments were discused at a news conference at the U.S. Attorney's Office in Downtown Buffalo on Friday afternoon. Officials from the Drug Enforcement Administration, New York State Police, Buffalo Police and Amherst Police and other local police departments will be in attendance.
U.S. Attorney James Kennedy says two years ago the investigation began, which led to two indictments on Thursday, charging five individuals with distributing thousands of doses of fentanyl, heroin and butyrfentanyl.
Kenney says the operation was extensive and covered parts of Erie and Niagara, as well as outlying counties.
The five individuals charged include:
- Robert Moore, 39, of Williamsville
- Reese Moore, 25, of Buffalo
- Kevin Abernathy, 31, of Buffalo
- Joshua Levine, 21, of Lancaster
- Oliver Kimmons, 49, of Lockport
Authorities say Kimmons had been previously indicted on drug and sex trafficking charges.
As of February 27th, the Erie County Medical Examiner's office had confirmed 233 opioid overdose fatalities for 2017. Another 35 cases were still pending confirmation. In 2016, 201 people died of an overdose in Erie County.
According to the Health Department, fentanyl and heroin-related opioids were found in nearly 80 percent of fatalities.
7 Eyewitness News will stream the 1 p.m. news conference on our WKBW app.