Public Safety

Winneshiek County brothers sentenced to over 3 years for selling heroin

Judge also orders each to pay $5,000 fine

(File photo) Department of Justice seal in the US Attorneys office at the federal courthouse in Cedar Rapids on Friday, Dec. 23, 2016. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
(File photo) Department of Justice seal in the US Attorneys office at the federal courthouse in Cedar Rapids on Friday, Dec. 23, 2016. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

CEDAR RAPIDS — A federal judge on Wednesday sentenced two Winneshiek County brothers to nearly four years in prison for selling heroin mixed with fentanyl and illegally possessing firearms.

Kaleb Breitsprecher, 22, of Ossian, pleaded guilty Aug. 25 to distributing heroin and possession of a firearm as an unlawful drug user.

His brother Cole Breitsprecher, 24, also of Ossian, pleaded guilty Sept. 1 to distribution of furanyl fentanyl and possession of a firearm as an unlawful drug user.

Evidence at a prior hearing showed authorities conducted controlled buy of drugs from the brothers multiple times in April and May of last year. During one of the transactions, Cole Breitsprecher sold an aerosol bottle of liquid containing furanyl fentanyl, a potent analogue of fentanyl, which is a pain medication 100 times more potent than morphine.

During other controlled buys, Kaleb Breitsprecher sold plastic bags with heroin to undercover law enforcement, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. Searches conducted at their residences in June of last year, authorities seized 12 guns. Each brother had a Bushmaster rifle with multiple high-capacity magazines. Both brothers admitted to using heroin, fentanyl and marijuana.

“The Breitsprechers endangered the entire community by unlawfully possessing guns while using drugs,” U.S. Attorney Peter Deegan, Jr. said. “They also sold heroin and furanyl fentanyl, presenting a grave risk to everyone who bought these incredibly dangerous opioids.”

U.S. District Senior Judge Linda Reade sentenced each brother to 46 months in prison and ordered each to pay a $5,000 fine. Both brothers must also serve three years of supervised release following any prison time.

Both men remain in U.S. Marshal custody until they can be taken to a federal prison.

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The case was investigated by the Northeast Iowa Drug Task Force and Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement, and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Dan Chatham.

l Comments: (319) 398-8318; trish.mehaffey@thegazette.com

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