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Van Zandt County Man Sentenced for Mail-Order Opioids

 


A Wills Point, Texas, man has been sentenced to federal prison for drug trafficking violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei today.

Namand Joaquincy Battles pleaded guilty on July 29, 2020, to possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance.  Friday, he was sentenced to 27 months in federal prison by U.S. District Judge J. Campbell Barker.

“I commend the hard work of the investigative team that put this case together,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei.  “We will continue to use a multi-agency approach to combat international drug trafficking.  We will not tolerate drug dealers like this one trying to profit off the addictions of our fellow citizens.”

According to information presented in court, in January 2020, law enforcement officials received information that a package had been seized as it was being shipped from the United Kingdom to a Wills Point, Texas, address.  The package, which was marked “clothing,” contained some clothes and snacks as well as 50,000 Tramadol tablets.  Federal agents were able to determine a second package was being mailed from the United Kingdom to the same Wills Point, Texas address.  That package also contained 50,000 Tramadol tablets and had been intercepted by law enforcement at the John F. Kennedy airport in New York.   Battles was identified as the intended recipient.  The investigation revealed that after receiving the packages from overseas sources, he would repackage the tablets for distribution by using United States Postal Service Priority Mail boxes and envelopes.  Battles admitted to having possessed with intent to distribute at least 100,000 Tramadol 100 mg tablets during the course of his criminal activities.  He was indicted by a federal grand jury on January 15, 2020.

This case was investigated by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, Homeland Security Investigations, U.S. Postal Inspection Service, Texas Department of Public Safety-Criminal Investigations Division, and Van Zandt County Sheriff’s Office, and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Allen Hurst.