Florida Man Convicted in Federal Trial for Fentanyl Distribution Linked to Fatal Overdoses

In a significant legal development, a federal jury has found Corey Gaddy, a 31-year-old resident of St. Petersburg, guilty of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances, including the potent opioid fentanyl. The charges also include two counts of distribution of fentanyl. Gaddy faces a potential maximum sentence of 60 years' imprisonment, with the sentencing hearing scheduled for February 1, 2024. The case exposes Gaddy's involvement as a supplier of opioids in Pinellas County, with fatal consequences linked to the distribution of fentanyl. 

Gaddy's Opioid Distribution Network:

Long-Standing Supplier Role: According to court records and trial testimonies, Gaddy operated as a key supplier of opioids in Pinellas County since 2017, contributing to the region's opioid epidemic.

Trafficking in Dangerous Substances: The charges specify Gaddy's involvement in the distribution of controlled substances, particularly fentanyl, a synthetic opioid known for its potency and association with numerous overdose cases.

Lethal Consequences and Callous Actions:

Previous Arrest and Continued Operations: Despite a prior arrest in February 2019, where Gaddy was caught with concealed heroin during a traffic stop by the Largo Police Department, he persisted in his illicit activities.

Fatal Overdoses: The trial revealed that on November 6, 2019, while on bond for a previous offense, Gaddy distributed fentanyl to one of his dealers, Shawn Rodriguez, who then supplied the substance to an individual identified as K.E. Tragically, K.E. succumbed to fentanyl toxicity, losing their life on November 7, 2019. Despite being aware of the fatal outcome, Gaddy callously continued distributing opioids.

Repeat Offenses: In April 2020, while still on bond for the pending state case, Gaddy distributed opioids to another individual, J.P. Within two days, J.P. was found dead on a fishing boat, highlighting the devastating consequences of Gaddy's illicit activities.

Co-Conspirator's Plea:

Shawn Rodriguez's Role: One of Gaddy's associates, Shawn Rodriguez, had previously pleaded guilty for his involvement in the conspiracy. His sentencing hearing is scheduled for February 7, 2024.

Law Enforcement Collaboration:

Comprehensive Investigation: The case was diligently investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office, and the Largo Police Department. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) also played a crucial role as part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation.

OCDETF Mission: The Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force aims to identify, disrupt, and dismantle the most serious drug trafficking and money laundering organizations, focusing on those primarily responsible for the nation's drug supply.

Prosecution Details:

Prosecution Team: The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Dan Baeza and Lauren Stoia.

Corey Gaddy's conviction sheds light on the pervasive issue of opioid distribution and its lethal consequences. As legal proceedings continue, this case serves as a stark reminder of the collaborative efforts needed to combat drug trafficking and protect communities from the devastating impact of opioid-related fatalities. The sentencing hearing in February 2024 will determine the legal consequences for Gaddy's role in perpetuating this public health crisis.



DATA SOURCE: Middle District of Florida | Jury Convicts Pinellas Man Of Trafficking Fentanyl | United States Department of Justice