Feds Announce Largest Federal Heroin and Fentanyl-Laced Seizure In Delaware History

David C. Weiss, United States Attorney for the District of Delaware, unsealed two criminal complaints charging two men with drug trafficking offenses in Delaware. Both men are detained pending further proceedings.

According to statements at the press conference and court documents, Julian Rivera-Villa, age 56, and Ricardo Perez-Guillen, age 40, of Gloucester City, New Jersey were charged in federal court in Wilmington last week in connection with sales of fentanyl-laced fake Oxycodone pills in Delaware. Perez-Guillen was arrested after selling a kilogram of heroin and 600 fake Oxycodone pills containing fentanyl in New Castle, Delaware, said Weiss. Rivera-Villa was arrested outside the residence he shared with Perez-Guillen in Gloucester City, New Jersey. A subsequent search of that residence yielded approximately 7 additional kilograms of heroin; 3 kilograms of cocaine; 14,000 fake Oxycodone pills that tested positive for the presence of fentanyl and over $28,000 in cash, added Weiss. Law enforcement also seized another 2 kilograms of heroin from a car registered to Perez-Guillen, added Weiss. Those kilograms of heroin were hidden in traps located behind the car’s rear seats.

The arrests and drug seizures are the result of a long-term investigation into fentanyl and heroin trafficking in Delaware by the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (“DEA”) Wilmington Resident Office Tactical Diversion Squad and High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (“HIDTA”) Group 41. The estimated street value of the seized drugs is in excess of $1 million.

U.S. Attorney Weiss noted that this was the largest federal seizure of heroin and fake Oxycodone pills by Delaware law enforcement in recent memory, stating: “Thousands of fentanyl-laced pills and over 1.4 million doses of heroin have been taken out of the hands of those who would seek to profit from illegally distributing these poisons to our communities. Fake Oxycodone pills such as those seized here are especially dangerous, because the pills actually contain fentanyl, a dangerous—and potentially deadly—synthetic opioid.”

Both Rivera-Villa and Perez-Guillen are charged with distribution of fentanyl and face a maximum of 20 years in prison and a $1,000,000 fine.

The DEA’s Tactical Diversion Squad and HIDTA Group 41 are comprised of investigators from Middletown Police Department, Newark Police Department, New Castle County Police Department, Delaware Alcohol & Tobacco Enforcement, Delaware State Police, Maryland State Police, Wilmington Police Department, Delaware Probation and Parole, Newport Police Department, and the University of Delaware Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Alexander Ibrahim.

The DEA and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Delaware also thanked Homeland Security Investigations, Immigration & Customs Enforcement, Camden, New Jersey DEA-HIDTA, and the Camden County Sherriff’s SERT team for their assistance.