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Law Enforcement Arrests Three Lubbock Residents on Fentanyl-Related Charges

OCT 27 (DALLAS) - Following a law enforcement operation this morning, led by officers with the Lubbock Police Department and special agents with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), three Lubbock, Texas residents were arrested on a federal criminal complaint charging them with conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute fentanyl, a highly potent synthetic opioid.

Today’s announcement was made at a news conference this afternoon hosted by John Parker, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas; Matt Powell, Lubbock County District Attorney; Greg Stevens, Chief, Lubbock Police Department; Calvin Bond, Assistant Special Agent in Charge, DEA; Charles Cobb, Resident Agent in Charge, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), Lubbock; Mike Reed, Chief Deputy, Lubbock County Sheriff’s Office; and Gary Albus, Regional Commander, Texas Department of Public Safety.

Sidney Caleb Lanier, 36, was arrested at his home on 154th Street.  Jessica Christine Holl, 28, and Jamie Marie Robertson, 32, were arrested at their apartment on 4th Street.

A date and time for their initial appearances has not been set yet.

According to the criminal complaint, from approximately January 2013 to October 27, 2016, defendants Lanier, Holl, and Robertson did knowingly and intentionally combine, conspire, confederate and agree with each other and with persons known and unknown to knowingly and intentionally distribute and possess with intent to distribute a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of fentanyl, a Schedule II controlled substance.

A federal criminal complaint is a written statement of the essential facts of the offense charged, and must be made under oath before a magistrate judge.  A defendant is entitled to the presumption of innocence until proven guilty.  The U.S. Attorney’s office has 30 days to present the matter to a grand jury for indictment.  The maximum statutory penalty for the offense charged is 20 years in federal prison and a $1 million fine.

This law enforcement operation focused on the distribution in the Lubbock area of the highly potent synthetic opioid, fentanyl.  Fentanyl is responsible for a sharp increase in opioid deaths across the U.S.  It poses a high risk of death not only to users, but also to law enforcement personnel.

While fentanyl can serve as a direct substitute for heroin in opioid-dependent individuals, it is a dangerous substitute as it is 50 times more potent than heroin and results in frequent overdoses that can lead to respiratory depression and death.  Cheaper than heroin, fentanyl can be ingested, inhaled or absorbed through the skin; just a few milligrams, equivalent to a few grains of table salt, may be deadly.

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