Former Oakland County reserved deputy sentenced for unlawful distribution of opioids
DETROIT – A former Oakland County reserve deputy sheriff will spend 49 months in prison for the unlawful distribution of prescription opioids, U.S. Attorney Matthew Schneider announced today.
Joining Schneider in the announcement was DEA Detroit Division Special Agent in Charge Timothy J. Plancon and FBI Detroit Division Special Agent in Charge Timothy R. Slater.
Daniel Vasquez, 61, was sentenced yesterday by U.S District Court Judge Paul D. Borman after pleading guilty to possession with the intent to distribute and distribution of controlled substances – namely the Schedule II opioid oxycodone.
The case revealed that Vasquez, a former reserve Oakland County sheriff’s deputy, would receive 1,500 oxycodone pills per month in addition to hydrocodone and other medication. Instead of taking the medication as prescribed, he would sell the pills in the community. Over the course of five years, he distributed more than 30,000 oxycodone pills on the street. Oxycodone is one of the most diverted controlled substances in the area. It is extremely powerful, addictive and in the opioid class that is easily abused, and can lead to addiction and eventual heroin use. Michigan has seen devastating statistics relating to opioid drug overdoses in the last five years.
“The vast majority of Michigan’s reserve police officers are outstanding public servants, but unfortunately, this one individual decided to violate his oath by selling deadly pills and harming the very community that he was tasked to protect,” said U.S. Attorney Schneider.
"When an officer betrays his oath by selling highly addictive opioids to vulnerable members of our community, it undermines trust in law enforcement and puts the public at risk. The facts of this case are especially troubling to those of us in law enforcement. It should be noted, however, that Mr. Vasquez's actions do not represent the hundreds of dedicated men and women of the Oakland County Sheriff's Office who work tirelessly to keep illegal drugs off the streets of Oakland County," said Special Agent in Charge Slater. "The FBI remains committed to working alongside the OCSO and our many federal, state and local partners to prosecute anyone who illegally distributes narcotics and contributes to the epidemic of opioid addiction in Michigan."
“The sentencing of this former reserved deputy sheriff in no way diminishes the hard work provided by so many reserve deputy officers on a daily basis,” said Special Agent in Charge Plancon. “This individual willingly participated in the destruction that drug trafficking brings to our neighborhoods. Make no mistake, when any member of the law enforcement community crosses the line and becomes a drug trafficker, the DEA and our law enforcement partners will be relentless in bringing them to justice."
The case was investigated by agents and task force officers of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Brandy R. McMillion. McMillion serves as the Opioid Fraud Abuse and Detection Unit Prosecutor for the Eastern District of Michigan and is dedicated solely to prosecuting defendants contributing to the nation’s opioid epidemic. The Eastern District of Michigan is one of the twelve districts included in this Department of Justice initiative.
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