PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — 12 people were arrested for allegedly distributing heroin and counterfeit oxycodone pills laced with fentanyl, along with laundering the profits, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office District of Oregon.
According to court documents, the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration began investigating Luis Antonia Beltran Arrendondo of Las Vegas in the fall of 2021. Arrendondo was suspected of distributing counterfeit oxycodone and heroin from Mexico up the west coastline to Oregon and Washington.
Nearly 115,000 counterfeit oxycodone pills containing fentanyl, 41 pounds of methamphetamine and more than 57 pounds of heroin were seized from the Portland metro area, Las Vegas and in California, according to officials.
Additionally, Arrendondo’s girlfriend, Jacqueline Paola Rodriguez Barrientos, reportedly laundered the drug trafficking profits through her salon business in Tualatin and bought nine residential properties.
Over a nine-month period, Barrientos allegedly made deposits totaling $3.5 million with the trafficking funds, and another $4.6 million was used on real estate investments in Oregon and Nevada.
Arrendondo and Barrientos were both arrested by DEA agents on February 17, 2022. Agents recovered evidence of the “couple’s high-end lifestyle,” including two luxury vehicles and a credit card statement showing the couple bought tickets to a professional boxing match for more than $16,000.
Nearly a month later, the couple appeared in federal court. While awaiting trial, the two will remain in custody.
Arrendondo’s ten co-conspirators have also been arrested and are awaiting trial, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Anyone suffering from addiction is urged to call the Lines for Life substance abuse helpline at 1-800-923-4357, text “RecoveryNow” to 839863 or visit linesforlife.org.