CLEARFIELD – The three-day trial for an alleged drug kingpin began Wednesday morning.
Robert “Mutt” Prisk is accused of running a drug distribution ring out of his former business and home between 2001 and 2006.
Attorney General Tom Corbett said in a press conference nearly one year ago that a grand jury found that Prisk used his garage and home to sell, store and use marijuana and cocaine. He also is alleged to have used his truck to transport drugs. Prisk was one of seven men charged in the case.
“This case is about drugs and guns and money,” said Senior Deputy Attorney General Dave Gorman at the beginning of the case.
So far the commonwealth has presented the lead investigator in the case, Agent Albert Adams of the Pennsylvania Office of the Attorney General’s Bureau of Narcotics Investigation and Drug Control. Adams was also recognized as an expert on drugs.
He indicated that the investigation began in 2001 after information was obtained regarding a drug distribution ring at Prisk’s business, Prisk Trucking. The investigation began as a drug task force investigation, according to Adams.
Adams stated that a search warrant was served around May 2006 on Prisk’s residence. Prisk’s girlfriend Sue Zortman eventually let the investigators in and indicated where drugs and paraphernalia were located, according to Adams. Prisk was found at the residence as well and taken into custody.
Evidence presented included 12 bags of marijuana that Adams believed was packaged for distribution, a pipe and other paraphernalia, as well as a handgun with a missing firing pin. Also found at the scene was an address book containing names and numbers of people that had been interviewed by authorities prior to the warrant being served, $400 and checks from Prisk’s business.
Adams indicated that in his experience drug dealers often use the money they use in dealing to support a business. The drugs were found in a purse. Adams said that often times items related to gender and age do not reflect who the drugs belong to. He stated that in other cases he has found drugs in children’s toys or in men’s shaving kits that belonged to women.
Adams also stated that the Prisk residence was hard to surveil because of it’s location and the proximity of Prisk’s relatives. He also added that a telescope was located in the kitchen. He stated that the telescope’s purpose would be revealed during later testimony.
Adams also discussed his use of a confidential informant in the case, whom he indicated would testify at a later time in the trial.
Clearfield County President Judge Fredric J. Ammerman broke for lunch around noon. The trial will pick back up around 1:10 p.m. The defense has yet to question the first witness.