A 27-year-old Austin man has been arrested on charges of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance. KXAN reports that the man is one of a group of individuals, from Texas to Louisiana, who allegedly used homeless people to obtain prescription drugs. Federal prosecutors announced the arrest on Wednesday, indicating suspects from Dallas, Austin, Houston, and Baton Rouge conspired to sell the illicit pharmaceuticals. The plan was originally hatched in 2013 and ran until late 2014 before investigators caught up with the group. If convicted, the suspects could face over 20 years in a federal penitentiary.
Officials indicated that the group preyed upon homeless and low-income individuals. The individuals were paid a small fee to pose as patients at various clinics and hospitals throughout Texas. Once prescriptions were filled out and obtained by these “patients,” the group would then take the illegally obtained drugs and sell them at a premium to other buyers in the state. While certainly not the first time this type of strategy has been employed by drug dealers in Texas, it is significant in both size and scope. Read the rest »