PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — A federal judge has convicted an Oregon man of providing heroin that resulted in the death of a 17-year-old high school student.
Aleksey Dzyuba was prosecuted under a federal law that carries a penalty of 20 years to life in prison if the drugs distributed result in death or serious injury. It’s called the Len Bias law, after a University of Maryland basketball player who died in 1986 of a cocaine overdose.
Convicted Thursday, the 43-year-old suburban Milwaukie man had been accused of supplying heroin last April to Toviy Sinyayev, who lapsed into a coma and died. Dzyuba will be sentenced April 2.
The Oregonian says (http://is.gd/rwwDON ) the defendant maintained the heroin that killed the boy came from another source but Senior U.S. District Judge Robert Jones found that implausible.
The U.S. attorney’s office says about 30 people prosecuted under the law in Oregon have pleaded guilty and charges pend against another 25. Prosecutors say this is the first such heroin overdose case to go to trial in Oregon.
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