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SC man gets 20 years in prison for distributing fentanyl in victim's death

LADSON, S.C. (WCBD) - A Ladson, South Carolina man entered a guilty plea in federal court in connection with a fentanyl overdose death.

United States District Judge David C. Norton, of Charleston, sentenced Robert Bryan Mansfield, 61, of Ladson was charged with distribution of Fentanyl resulting in death and sentenced to a minimum of 20 years in prison,to be followed by 5 years of supervised release.  

Evidence presented at the change of plea hearing established that on February 2, 2017, Special Agents with ICE-Homeland Security Investigations seized over a kilogram of fentanyl that had been shipped from Hong Kong and was destined for Mansfield at his residence in Ladson.

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Special Agents with ICE-Homeland Security Investigations in Charleston obtained and executed a search warrant at Mansfield's residence and recovered over 100 grams of fentanyl, numerous other controlled substances, and items associated with the distribution and trafficking of narcotics.

That same day, Postal Inspectors with the United States Postal Inspection Service also recovered 10 packages of fentanyl that Mansfield attempted to mail to various locations across the United States.

During the investigation into Mansfield, Special Agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration were able to identify Mansfield as the source of fentanyl that led to one individual's overdose death in December 2016. Further investigation showed that Mansfield used the "dark web" to purchase fentanyl and other controlled substances from sources in Hong Kong and other foreign locations.

He then sold fentanyl and other controlled substances through the "dark web" and used the United States Postal Service to ship packages to customers throughout the country.

Following the sentencing hearing, Assistant United States Attorney Nick Bianchi stated, “The United States Attorney’s Office is committed to working with federal, state and local law enforcement to combat the opioid epidemic on every level, particularly when the actions of drug dealers directly result in the deaths of others. Through the diligent efforts of law enforcement, we were able to bring to justice an individual who was pushing large amounts of a lethal drug out throughout the country and were also able to begin to bring closure to one family who lost a loved one to this crisis.” 

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