A Lackawanna man accused of selling illegal narcotics near two schools in Hamburg made an initial appearance Friday before U.S. Magistrate Jeremiah J. McCarthy, who released him on conditions.
Federal prosecutors said that the Hamburg Police and U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration began investigating 52-year-old Mohammed Alawi in September. He was identified as selling hydrocodone from inside Bayview Deli on Bayview Road, which is across the street from Big Tree Elementary School and Frontier Central High School, in Hamburg.
According to the U.S. Attorney's Office, the DEA allegedly conducted two controlled purchases from Alawi on Oct. 3 and Nov. 6. Prosecutors said Alawi has filled several prescriptions issued by his doctor for hydrocodone.
Alawi has a previous federal felony conviction from 2016 for misbranding food.
Alawi faces a maximum 40 years in prison if convicted on the current charges against him, which are possession with intent to distribute, and distribution of, a controlled substance, and distribution of a controlled substance in or near schools.