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Contraband
06/14/2011

2 men arraigned on steroid importation and distribution charges

Defendants allegedly laundered proceeds from sale of steroids

PITTSBURGH - Two Ukrainian nationals appeared before a federal magistrate judge Monday after an investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement's (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) revealed they violated U.S. narcotics laws.

Oleksandr Skochyk, 34, and Yeveniy Suray, 28, both of Kiev, Ukraine, were indicted in April by a federal grand jury on seven counts related to the importation and distribution of anabolic steroids. Both men were extradited to the United States from Cyprus to face the criminal charges brought against them.

According to court documents, Skochyk and Suray engaged in the illegal activity starting in August 2008 and continued through October 2009. In addition to importing and distributing the banned substance, they also illegally laundered the proceeds from the sales.

The defendants face a maximum total sentence of 80 years in prison, a fine of $2 million, or both. An indictment is only a charge and not evidence of guilt.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mary McKeen Houghton in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. ICE HSI was joined in the investigation by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration Office of Criminal Investigations; the Drug Enforcement Administration; the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations; the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and the U.S. Postal Inspection Service.