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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of New York
Carla B. Freedman, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Saturday, March 18, 2023

Schenectady Felon Admits to Possessing Fentanyl and Cocaine Base for Distribution, and Possessing Firearms in Furtherance of Drug Trafficking

ALBANY, NEW YORK – Charles Whorley, age 35, formerly of Schenectady, New York, pled guilty yesterday to possessing and intending to distribute fentanyl and cocaine base, and to possessing firearms in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

United States Attorney Carla B. Freedman; John B. DeVito, Special Agent in Charge of the New York Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF); and New York State Police (NYSP) Acting Superintendent Steven A. Nigrelli made the announcement.

Whorley admitted to distributing fentanyl on several dates in June 2020, and to possessing 94 grams of fentanyl and 77 grams of cocaine base, which he intended to distribute, at his residence in Schenectady on June 25, 2020. Whorley, a previously convicted felon, further admitted to possessing three loaded handguns at his residence, which allowed him to better protect the drugs and the cash proceeds from the sale of drugs.

Whorley faces at least 5 years and up to life in prison, a fine of up to $1 million, and a term of post-imprisonment supervised release of at least 3 years and up to life when he is sentenced on July 19, 2023, by United States District Judge Mae A. D’Agostino. A defendant’s sentence is imposed by a judge based on the particular statute the defendant is charged with violating, the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, and other factors.

The NYSP and ATF investigated this case with assistance provided by the Schenectady County District Attorney’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Emmet O’Hanlon is prosecuting this case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

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