ARIZONA NEWS

Arizona DEA shuts down two Valley pharmacies

Jul 6, 2017, 6:47 PM | Updated: Jul 7, 2017, 6:19 am
(AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)...
(AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)
(AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)

PHOENIX — The Drug Enforcement Administration and Homeland Security Investigations closed down two Valley pharmacies Thursday as part of an ongoing investigation.

The two pharmacies in question weren’t named by the DEA, but department did say 38-year-old pharmacist Vilawoe Aku Boadu was arrested and charged with distributing controlled substances, including oxycodone, hydrocodone, alprazolam, and promethazine with codeine.

“The diversion of legitimate prescription medication is partially to blame for the deadly epidemic of opioid addiction throughout the country,” said Doug Coleman, Special Agent in Charge of DEA in Arizona. “DEA will continue to take aggressive action against those people and organizations responsible for trafficking in these powerful substances, especially those who have been legally entrusted with them and choose to break the law.”

Eight warrants were executed and three businesses were entered, where DEA and HSI seized 13 handguns, three rifles, a shotgun, nearly $200,000 in cash and assets as well as several vehicles.

“This criminal organization distributed dangerous and highly addictive controlled narcotics throughout our communities, illegal profiting from the suffering of others,” said Scott Brown, special agent in charge of HSI Phoenix. “Their actions make them no different than the street-corner drug pushers. Today’s arrests should stand as a reminder to others that we will continue our joint law enforcement efforts to ensure that people in positions of trust will no longer add to the growing opioid epidemic.”

Gov. Doug Ducey recently declared a health emergency in Arizona after data showed 790 people died from an overdose last year in the state. Nearly 200 people had possible opioid overdoses just weeks ago.

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Arizona DEA shuts down two Valley pharmacies