Last week, the Central Oregon Drug Enforcement Team concluded a short-term investigation with the arrest of Dustin Phillip Murray, age 33, of Prineville, Oregon.
During a concurrent investigation, drug Agents identified Murray as a fentanyl trafficker in the Crook County Oregon area. The initial investigation alleges Mr. Murray imported fentanyl pills from the Portland area into other areas of Oregon where he distributes them.
During a multi-county surveillance operation, CODE Detectives applied for, obtained, and executed a search warrant. At approximately, 11:15PM, Mr. Murray was contacted during a traffic stop on Highway 126 near the Prineville airport while he was driving a Toyota Tacoma. CODE Detectives and DCSO Deputies gathered and seized a commercial quantity of fake pharmaceutical tablets made of fentanyl along with other evidence of commercial drug sales.
A “a commercial quantity” is defined by statute as five grams or more of a mixture or substance containing a detectable amount of fentanyl, or any substituted derivative of fentanyl as defined by the rules of the Oregon Board of Pharmacy. This is not a separate criminal charge, rather an increase in the sentencing guidelines.
The greater Portland area is a major transshipment hub where illegal drugs coming from the southwest border are stored in local warehouses, storage units, and residential properties. The bulk shipments of drugs are usually broken down into smaller quantities and transported to other states or distributed to local dealers. The Portland area has an international airport, interstate highways, and bus and train lines that make it easy for shipments to be smuggled to other destinations around the pacific northwest.