Welfare office worker in Hazleton accused of drug crimes

By Dan Stokes - [email protected]
Astacio -

HAZLETON — City police arrested a woman at the state welfare office where she works Tuesday for suspected drug dealing.

Ghislane Astacio, 21, of Hazleton, allegedly delivered 30 grams of raw heroin.

During the investigation spanning several months, police say Astacio’s husband, Royal, was also arrested after he delivered large amounts of heroin and methamphetamine.

Ghislane Astacio was taken into police custody at her place of employment, the Luzerne County Public Assistance office in downtown Hazleton, according to a press release. Despite its name, the office is operated by the state, not the county.

Astacio was arraigned Tuesday morning by District Judge Joseph D. Zola on charges of delivery of a controlled substance and conspiracy to deliver a controlled substance.

She was released on $50,000 unsecured bail.

“… There’s a zero tolerance for distributing drugs in our city,” said Hazleton City Police Chief Jerry Speziale. “Anyone that dares to sell drugs in Hazleton will vigorously be pursued and face swift and decisive justice.”


By Dan Stokes

[email protected]

Reach Dan Stokes at 570-991-6389 or on Twitter @ByDanStokes

Reach Dan Stokes at 570-991-6389 or on Twitter @ByDanStokes