Ohio man indicted on drug charges

WHEELING, WEST VIRGINIA – LaShawn Royce Nickelson, of Newark, Ohio, is facing drug and firearms charges, Acting United States Attorney Randolph J. Bernard announced.

Nickelson, 49, was indicted this week on one count of “Conspiracy to Distribute and Possess with the Intent to Distribute Cocaine Base, Cocaine Hydrochloride, Heroin, and Fentanyl,” one count of “Distribution of Cocaine Base within 1000 feet of a Protected Location,” one count of “Aiding and Abetting the Distribution of Cocaine Base,” one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Heroin,” one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Fentanyl,” one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine Hydrochloride,” one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine Base,” and one count of “Unlawful Possession of a Firearm.”  “Nickelson is accused of distributing cocaine base, cocaine hydrochloride, heroin and fentanyl in Ohio County in September and October 2020. Nickelson, a person prohibited from having a firearm because of a prior conviction, is also accused of having a 9mm pistol in October 2020.

Nickelson faces up to 20 years of incarceration and a fine of up to $1,000,000 for each drug count, faces at least one year and up to 40 years of incarceration and fine of up to $2,000,000 for the distribution near a protected location charge, and faces up to 10 years of incarceration and a fine of up to $250,000 for the firearms charge. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Shawn M. Adkins is prosecuting the case on behalf of the government. The Ohio Valley Drug Task Force, a HIDTA-funded initiative, investigated.

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