For Immediate Release
Multi-Convicted Felon Charged with Firearms and Drug Law Violations
PITTSBURGH, Pa. - A resident of Braddock, Pennsylvania, has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Pittsburgh on charges of violating federal drug and firearms laws, United States Attorney Scott W. Brady announced today.
The three-count indictment, returned on September 18, named Mario Tiller, age 40, as the sole defendant.
According to the indictment, on June 19, 2018, Tiller possessed with intent to distribute cocaine base, commonly known as crack. The indictment further alleges that Tiller unlawfully possessed a Glock 9 millimeter pistol in furtherance of the drug offense, after having been convicted of multiple crimes punishable by more than one year in prison. Those convictions include two convictions for possession with intent to deliver controlled substances, two convictions for terroristic threats, and one conviction for theft by unlawful taking. Federal law prohibits anyone who has been convicted of a crime punishable by a term of imprisonment exceeding one year from possessing a firearm or ammunition.
The law provides for a maximum total sentence of not less than five years and up to life in prison, a fine of $1,500,000, or both. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed would be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.
Assistant United States Attorney Christy C. Wiegand is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosive, along with the Pittsburgh Bureau of Police, conducted the investigation leading to the Indictment in this case. This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program that has been historically successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has made turning the tide of rising violent crime in America a top priority. In October 2017, as part of a series of actions to address this crime trend, Attorney General Sessions announced the reinvigoration of PSN and directed all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to develop a district crime reduction strategy that incorporates the lessons learned since PSN launched in 2001.
An indictment is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.