The Kansas City Star reported on a guilty plea in U.S. District Court in Kansas City from a man who sold a counterfeit oxycodone pill made with carfentanil that caused a non-fatal overdose in a 17-year-old boy. Although initially facing four charges against him, Gage S. Lankas pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute carfentanil, a drug that is 10,000 more potent than morphine. Special Agent in Charge William J. Callahan III of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s St. Louis said that carfentanil, “…has no legitimate medical purpose for human beings.”
According to the plea agreement, on August 2, 2017, Lankas sold 14 of the counterfeit oxycodone pills and hundreds of Xanax pills to the 17-year-old. Once back at his home in Grain Valley, the teenager took a few of the Xanax pills and one-half of one of the oxycodone pills and then blacked out. The teenager was transported to Children’s Mercy Hospital and Kansas City, Missouri where doctors were able to save his life. When shown a photo array by police, the youth was able to pick Lankas out as the man who sold him the pills.
The court document stated that on August 5, 2017, Lankas’ girlfriend called the Kansas City Police to their home after they had an argument and he had threatened to kill himself. Inside the home, police found over 1,300 complete Xanax pills, 67 partial Xanax pills, 3.25 pills blue pills stamped with A215, along with other drug paraphernalia. Before his arrest, Lankas admitted to police to having purchased all of the pills from the internet. In September, test results of the pills seized from both the victim and Lankas’ homes showed blue oxycodone pills the contain carfentanil.
Lankas faces up to 20 years in prison. At this time, no sentencing date has been set.