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Plea talks continue in probation officer drug case

Attorneys in the case of Matthew V. Fender, a Niagara County probation officer accused of stealing drugs from four probationers he was supervising, said Friday they continue to discuss a possible plea bargain.

Fender made a one-minute appearance Friday in Niagara Falls City Court, where he waived a preliminary hearing. That gives prosecutors the right to submit his case to a grand jury for possible indictment.

However, First Assistant District Attorney Holly E. Sloma and defense attorney P. Andrew Vona said they have been talking about a potential resolution, including one that could occur without an indictment.

"We will continue to have discussions after that waiver," Sloma said.

No date for further proceedings was set. Fender remains on paid leave from his job.

Probationers feared no one would believe probation officer stole their drugs

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