According to the Deseret News, at least one more individual may soon face charges in the multimillion-dollar fentanyl drug ring that Aaron Shamo allegedly ran in Utah. If that individual is indicted, the number of defendants would increase to seven. Investigators continue to see if any overdose deaths can be linked to the pills that the defendants are charged with shipping across the country. The superseding indictment showed that between November 18 – 20, 2016, members of the conspiracy allegedly shipped fake pills made with fentanyl to addresses in 24 different states. The government maintains that the conspiracy was in operation from no later than July 8, 2015.
Shamo and his five co-conspirators face charges of selling counterfeit prescription drugs on the dark web to thousands of people around the country. The government estimates that at one point, the conspiracy brought in over $2.8 million in less than a year. Prosecutors say that if Shamo is convicted on just the first charge against him, knowingly engaging in a criminal enterprise, he will automatically face a mandatory life sentence due to the volume of drugs involved in the case. According to U.S. News & World Report, all those who have been charged have entered not guilty pleas.
Although Shamo’s defense attorney Greg Skordas referred to the defendants as, “dumb kids,” authorities contend that this case highlights how a small organization can dramatically increase the distribution of potentially fatal drugs throughout the country.
The case is expected to be back in court on December 1, 2017.