News Release
May 20, 2009
Contact: Joanna DeSanto
Number: 312-886-2597

Prior Lake Man Indicted for Allegedly Distributing Xanax and Oxycontin

MAY 20 -- (Minneapolis) The owner of a pharmaceutical company that collects outdated, recalled, or excess controlled substances was indicted yesterday in federal court for allegedly distributing controlled substances, namely prescription Xanax and Oxycontin.

Mark Andrew Goetz, 40, Prior Lake, was charged with one count of distribution of alprazolam and one count of distribution of oxycodone and alprazolam. Goetz’s indictment alleges that on Jan. 10, 2009, he knowingly and intentionally distributed approximately 99 tablets of Xanax, which contained alprazolam. It also alleges that on May 6 Goetz distributed approximately 1,274 tablets of Oxycontin, which contained oxycodone, and an additional 245 tablets of Xanax.

According to a Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) affidavit, Goetz owns Pharmaceutical Returns, a reverse distributor of controlled substances. As a reverse distributor, the company, located in Northfield, is authorized by the DEA to collect controlled substances, return them to drug companies for credit or destroy them at approved incinerators.

In January 2009, the Metro Gang Strike Task Force learned that Goetz was allegedly distributing controlled substances he obtained from DEA registrants to drug customers just prior to or shortly after scheduled destructions of the controlled substances. A DEA registrant is a person, such as a doctor or pharmacist, or company such as a drug manufacturer, who is allowed by law thru the use of a DEA registration number to handle or prescribe controlled substances.

The investigation included two undercover purchases from Goetz. The first undercover buy on January 10, 2009 was for 99 tablets of Xanax from Goetz at his residence. The second undercover purchase of 1,274 tablets of Oxycontin and 245 tablets of Xanax was conducted by the DEA and the task force on May 6, 2009 in a parking lot of a south Minneapolis apartment complex. Goetz was stopped by police as he was leaving the parking lot, and officers seized a small amount of a controlled substance and a laptop computer.

If convicted, Goetz faces a potential maximum penalty of 20 years in prison on the distribution count involving oxycodone and three years in prison on the alprazolam distribution count. All sentences are determined by a federal district court judge.

This case is the result of an investigation by the Metro Gang Strike Task Force and the DEA. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Thomas M. Hollenhorst.

The public is reminded that the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty either in a court of law or by guilty plea.