SANTA ROSA, Calif. (BCN) — Three Santa Rosa men were arrested Wednesday and charged with conspiring to ship fentanyl-laced Oxycodone to cities in Tennessee, the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Nashville announced. Matthew Cox, 26, Marcus Johnson, 24, and Ricardo Molinero-Alcarez, 27, were arraigned in federal court in the Northern District of California for conspiring to distribute and possessing with intent to distribute controlled substances in middle Tennessee.
The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) allege that the three men were identified in their investigation into fentanyl-laced pills, known as “M30s,” that were shipped from Santa Rosa to more than a dozen states. Authorities used surveillance, reviewed social media sites and examined mobile payment records to hone in on the Santa Rosa trio.
The investigation allegedly traced the M30 pills from Santa Rosa to the Tennessee cities of Columbia and Nashville. During a recent search in Columbia, law enforcement recovered a loaded firearm along with the pills, prosecutors said.
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On July 25, HSI agents seized a package from a UPS store in Sebastopol that was destined for Nashville. Prosecutors allege that the package contained “thousands” of M30 tablets weighing about 2.4 kilograms. The package also contained more than 8 pounds of methamphetamine. On Aug. 9, agents again intercepted packages that were bound for Nashville, one with 472 grams of M30s and another containing approximately 4 pounds of meth.
If convicted, each defendant faces up to 20 years in prison, the Department of Justice said.
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