Three Texans were in U.S. District Court for an initial appearance Wednesday, accused of drug conspiracy after law enforcement agents seized 1½ kilograms of fentanyl in Lucas County, authorities said.
Anthony Robinson, 32, Darrius Lewis, 29, and Barbara Wilson, 21, appeared before Magistrate Judge James Knepp, each charged with conspiracy with intent to distribute a controlled substance.
The suspects were arrested Tuesday at an undisclosed Red Roof Inn in Lucas County and booked into the Lucas County jail after authorities seized about a kilogram of fentanyl at a South Toledo post office, about to be shipped to Texas. Another half kilo of the substance and about $8,500 in cash were seized when a search warrant was served at the motel, where the suspects were staying, authorities said.
The drugs have an estimated street value of about $1 million.
“The fentanyl seized [Tuesday] night is enough to kill everyone in Toledo several times over,” said Justin Herdman, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio. “This is a great example of law enforcement working together to make our community safer.”
Steve Francis, special agent in charge of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement homeland security investigations office in Detroit, said fentanyl is “a dangerous synthetic opioid with deadly consequences for users and those in law enforcement.”
Authorities were tipped off by a motel manager, who stated that “three persons had just checked into the hotel and that they were acting strange,” according to the affidavit.
An ensuing surveillance led agents to the post office at 6020 W. Bancroft St., where they seized the package with the fentanyl. The package contained a coffee can with the drugs inside, wrapped in heat-sealed plastic, according to the affidavit.
Mr. Robinson identified Ms. Wilson as his half-sister and said they drove from Texas to Toledo to attend a family wedding.
Mr. Lewis told authorities he flew to Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport and then took an Uber to Toledo to meet Ms. Wilson to help her drive back to Texas, according to court documents.
The affidavit states that Mr. Robinson and Mr. Lewis have a history of “prior arrests and convictions for narcotics and firearm-related offenses” and that Mr. Robinson was released from prison in February.
A pretrial hearing was set for March 29.
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