SIOUX FALLS — A Yankton man will be sentenced in January in federal court on charges connected to opioids.

According to a press release from United States Attorney Ron Parsons issued Monday, Cory Poelstra, 29, appeared before Judge Schreier on Oct. 31 and pleaded guilty to a Superseding Information that charged him with Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Substance, namely fentanyl.

During his involvement in the conspiracy, Poelstra ordered fentanyl from the "Dark Web" and had it shipped to Yankton. He then sold fentanyl to various customers in South Dakota.

The press release stated that Poelstra "also was aware that some of his fentanyl customers were reselling it to others."

Sentencing is scheduled on Jan. 28, 2019. Poelstra faces a maximum sentence of 20 years in federal prison, a $1 million fine, or both, and a term of supervised release.

Meanwhile, indictments issued last month against three other individuals, including a Vermillion man, were announced.

On Oct.10, Stuart Harlon Siecke, 27, of Worthing; Dean Joseph Bourn, 36, of Vermillion; and Deon Lee Hillard, 30, of Minneapolis were indicted by a federal grand jury in Sioux Falls for Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Substance. The three men are alleged to be part of a fentanyl distribution ring stretching from Minneapolis to Yankton. Hillard’s federal indictment came while he was released on bond after being charged in Minnesota state court for causing a fentanyl overdose death.

The cases were announced Monday as part of a larger effort being made by law enforcement against opioid abuse, the press release said.

"Federal, state, local, and tribal task force officers are working these cases hard in every corner of the state," said Parsons. "And we’re not going to let up. We’re going to hammer the traffickers who are dealing these poisons with everything we’ve got."

Overall, cases against at least 19 defendants have resulted in indictments, arraignments, guilty pleas or prison, the press release said.

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