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Two facing up to 40 years in prison for narcotics sales

A Lockport man is facing 5-40 years in prison for selling fentanyl-laced heroin, while a Buffalo is also facing up to 40 years in prison for beating a witness in a public housing drug-related case.

The U.S. Attorney's Office says Joseph Thompson, 68, has pleaded guilty to possessing with intent to distribute more than 40 grams of the illicit opioid from his Elmwood Avenue home.

After an undercover drug buy, authorities executed a search warrant on his home and found about 88 grams of fentanyl, 60 grams of heroin, 17 grams of crack cocaine, paraphernalia and nearly $12,000 in cash.

Thompson was one of 17 defendants indicted in August 2016 for his role in a drug-trafficking organization stretching from Mexico and California to Western New York and the third defendant to be convicted. Sentencing is scheduled for September 7.

The U.S. Attorney's Office also says a Buffalo man is facing up to 40 years in prison and a $250,000 fine for beating a witness in a narcotics trafficking case surrounding the Gates Housing Project in Lackawanna.

Twenty people alleged to be members of the Project Boys gang were indicted in December 2014 for selling drugs at the public housing project. Among them was Eric Taylor, 35.

Taylor is the latest to plead guilty to beating a witness who was the testify against another defendant, Laron Thompson. Laron Thompson and Sarah Thompson have already pleaded guilty to the attack. Charges are pending against Reuben Fears.

Sentencing for Taylor is scheduled for August 15.

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