BUFFALO, N.Y. — U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul, Jr. announced today that Tyrell Skipper, 25, of Buffalo, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute cocaine before U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara. The charge carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison, and a $1,000,000 fine.
Assistant U.S. Attorney George C. Burgasser, who is handling the case, stated that between June 2013 and July 23, 2014, Skipper conspired with co-defendants Michael Robertson, Antwan Steward, and others to distribute cocaine in the City of Buffalo. In addition, the defendant maintained a premises at 2 Cleveland Drive in Buffalo for the purpose of distributing cocaine. During the course of the conspiracy, Skipper was in possession of a firearm.
The Schuele Boys Gang, which operated in the Schuele Street area of the East Side of Buffalo, is believed to be responsible for multiple acts of violence and the distribution of illegal narcotics including cocaine, crack cocaine and marijuana.
Skipper is one of 28 Schuele Boys Gang members and associates arrested in this case. To date, 12 of the defendants have been convicted.
The fact that a defendant has been charged with a crime is merely an accusation and the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
The plea is the culmination of an investigation on the part of the FBI's Safe Streets Task Force which includes representatives of the Amherst Police Department; the Buffalo Police Department; U.S. Border Patrol, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; the Cheektowaga Police Department; the Erie County Sheriff’s Department; the Hamburg Police Department; the Lancaster Police Department; the Niagara Frontier Transportation Authority Police; the New York State Department of Correctional Services; the New York State Police; and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations. Additional assistance was provided by the Drug Enforcement Administration; U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the United States Marshal Service, the Lackawanna Police Department, and the Niagara County Sheriff’s Department.
Skipper will be sentenced on December 18, 2015 at 1:00 p.m. before Judge Arcara.