ABINGDON, Va. – A Marion, Virginia man was sentenced this week to 36 months in prison for attempted possession with the intent to distribute more than 40 grams of fentanyl.
Anthony Peter Arrindell, 20, ordered illegal fentanyl pills through the mail. Although they resembled pharmaceutical-grade oxycodone-hydrochloride pills, the pills that were mailed to Arrindell were inconsistent in size, shape, and color, indicating that they were counterfeit pills. Pills of this type are sometimes referred to as “Roxicodone,” “pressed,” or “M30” pills because they have an imprint of an “M” on one side and a “30” on the other side.
“Fentanyl, and other powerful opioids, continue to ravage Virginia communities as substance abuse disorder cases increase,” United States Attorney Christopher R. Kavanaugh said today. “The United States Attorney’s Office will continue to prosecute those individuals who prey on the addictions of others and to support those struggling to overcome addiction.”
According to court documents, in early 2021, law enforcement began investigating a flood of illegal pill distribution in Smyth County, Virginia.
In June and July of last year, United States Postal Inspection Service investigators identified and intercepted two separate suspected drug parcels that were destined for Arrindell. In one parcel, investigators found roughly 1100 pressed fentanyl pills, and in the other they found more than 1,700 pressed fentanyl pills.
On August 16, 2021, investigators intercepted another suspected drug parcel sent to Arrindell that had the same California return address as the July parcel. Investigators conducted a controlled delivery of this parcel to the Post Office in Marion where Arrindell then came to collect the parcel. Upon leaving the Post Office, law enforcement confronted Arrindell and found roughly 200 pressed pills after opening the seized parcel in his possession.
The Smyth County Sheriff’s Office, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service, the U.S. Postal Service Office of Inspector General, and the Federal Bureau of Investigation investigated the case.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Whit D. Pierce prosecuted the case.