BOSTON – A Gardner, Mass., man pleaded guilty today in federal court in Boston for his role in a conspiracy to traffic counterfeit steroids marketed on social media to bodybuilders and sold to customers around the country.
Robert Medeiros, 32, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to traffic in counterfeit drugs and to distribute controlled substances. U.S. District Court Judge Indira Talwani scheduled sentencing for Sept. 21, 2017.
On April 12, 2017, Medeiros and five others were arrested and charged with trafficking counterfeit steroids. It is alleged that, for at least two years prior to their arrests, members of the organization manufactured steroid products, marketed them falsely under the Onyx brand, and sold them to customers across the United States using email and social media platforms. Medeiros’ principal role in the conspiracy was to fulfill orders for anabolic steroids by obtaining the finished steroid products - branded with Onyx labeling and packaging - from other members of the conspiracy, prepare the steroids for shipment, and ship the steroids via the U.S. Postal Service to customers across the United States. Customers paid for the steroids through financial services companies like Western Union and MoneyGram. Members of the conspiracy allegedly used false identifications and multiple locations in an effort to collect the proceeds without attracting suspicion.
The charging statute provides for a sentence of no greater than five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of up to $250,000 or twice the gain or loss of the criminal activity. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
Acting United States Attorney William D. Weinreb; Matthew Etre, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; Shelly Binkowski, Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; and Jeffrey Ebersole, Special Agent in Charge of the Food and Drug Administration, Office of Criminal Investigations, New York Field Office, made the announcement today. Assistance was provided by the Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division; Massachusetts State Police; Boston Police Department; Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Police Department; Customs and Border Protection; and Lynn, Shrewsbury, Gloucester, Saugus, and Gardner Police Departments. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Amy Harman Burkart and David J. D’Addio of Weinreb’s Cybercrime Unit are prosecuting the case.