— A Honesdale man was arrested and charged with selling heroin.
Daniel R. DiBenedetto, 24, 1310 Westside Avenue, has been charged with nine felony counts and two misdemeanor county, all related to the sale of heroin.
According to Wayne County District Attorney Janine Edwards, the first sale of heroin was made on Terrace Street in Honesdale to a confidential informant. There was 100 bags of heroin involved in that transaction.
According to the affidavit of probable cause, on Nov. 8, 2012, arrangements were made to make a heroin purchase at an address on Terrace Street. It took place at around 3:15 p.m.
According to the document, the confidential informant received a text message that DiBenedetto was on his way and after he arrived, both entered a ground floor apartment.
The report says the informant gave DiBenedetto $700 in cash and received 100 bags of heroin.
The second sale was made on Westside Avenue, again to a confidential informant, and also involved 100 bags of heroin.
This took place on Dec. 5 when the suspect asked the confidential informant to meet him near a local business. It was around 4:18 p.m.
Once the confidential informant was in place, he reported that DiBenedetto was walking from the area of his home.
The informant told police that DiBenedetto got into the informant's car and handed him two bricks of heroin and took $650 from the informant.
The investigation into this incident was conducted by members of the Wayne County District Attorney's Drug Task Force and the Pennsylvania State Police Vice Unit.
Assisting in the investigation were members of the Wayne County Drug Task Force, Pennsylvania State Police and the Honesdale Borough Police Department. DiBenedetto was taken into custody by the Honesdale Police Department.
He was arraigned before Magisterial District Judge Bonnie Carey who remanded him to the Wayne County Prison in lieu of $300,000 bail.
Each count of delivery of heroin carries a sentence of up to 15 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. Mandatory sentences depend on the weight of the drugs.
Misdemeanors for possession of heroin carries up to a year in jail and a fine of up to $5,000.
"Heroin is an epidemic in Wayne County which drives a large percentage of our crime including burglary and retail thefts," said Edwards. "This office will continue to utilize the resources available and the drug task force to investigate, arrest and convict those who sell this drug in our county."
Edwards thanked all of the agencies involved for assistance in apprehending DiBenedetto.
She also said the issue of heroin is front and center with her office.
"This is something that I work on with the task force every single day," said Edwards.
Page 2 of 2 - She called heroin the "drug of choice" in Wayne County and said they are working hard to stop dealers.
However, Edwards also acknowledged that Wayne County, like many other counties in this part of the state, is not immune to such a problem.
"We're not as isolated a community as we once were," said Edwards. "But it is not just us."
This is the second major bust in five months in Honesdale.
On Sept. 28, more than 400 bags of heroin and 20 bags of cocaine were seized from a house at 215 Terrace Street.
John Henneforth Jr., 33, was arrested during that raid. He was charged with six felonies and two misdemeanors related to the sale of heroin. He was later given more charges based on information collected from law enforcement officials.
Henneforth remains in jail in Wayne County under $250,000 bond.
At that time, Edwards called Henneforth a "major drug dealer" in Wayne County.