Police Union Director Arrested After Allegedly Distributing Thousands of Fentanyl Pills from China
The executive director of the San Jose Police Officers’ Association has been charged with allegedly importing fentanyl from numerous countries, the U.S. Attorney’s office said in a news release.
According to the release, 64-year-old Joanne Marian Segovia was charged Monday with using computers from her home and office to import thousands of synthetic opioids, including valeryl fentanyl pills.
Prosecutors say Segovia had at least 61 shipments of such drugs in boxes sent to her home from October 2015 until January of this year.
La directora del sindicato de la Policías de San José, California ha sido formalmente acusada de importar fentanilo. Joanne Marian Segovia, de 64 años, presuntamente usó equipo policial para solicitar al menos 61 cargamentos de drogas de China y México. 🇺🇲 pic.twitter.com/YV9Jg0HaJQ
— DeReborn 🇲🇽 (@MarkDeReborn) March 30, 2023
She allegedly agreed to receive the packages and then distribute them across the U.S.
She came under the radar of investigators during a broader investigation of drugs that are illegally imported into the country.
The shipments sent to her California home were allegedly disguised to hide the contents, per the release. They were later mailed elsewhere by Segovia, investigators said.
“The manifests for these shipments declared their contents with labels like ‘Wedding Party Favors,’ ‘Gift Makeup,’ or ‘Chocolate and Sweets,'” the U.S. attorney’s office said.
The shipments originated from countries such as Hong Kong, Hungary, India, Singapore and China.
From July 2019 until January of this year, investigators claimed they intercepted five of the packages.
Each contained “thousands of pills of controlled substances, including the synthetic opioids Tramadol and Tapentadol,” the news release said.
Each package had a street value in the thousands of dollars.
The U.S. attorney’s office said Segovia was questioned about the packages in February but received and mailed one to a woman in North Carolina earlier this month anyway.
During questioning, she allegedly blamed a housekeeper whom she claimed had a drug problem.
“On March 13, 2023, federal agents seized a parcel in Kentucky, containing valeryl fentanyl, addressed to Segovia,” the news release said. “The package allegedly originated from China on March 10, 2023 and declared its contents as a ‘clock.’”
Investigators say she used her police union UPS mail account.
The release said Segovia and those she allegedly worked with to traffic deadly drugs used the encrypted messaging app WhatsApp.
Segovia has been charged with an attempt to unlawfully import valeryl fentanyl. She faces up to 20 years in prison if she is convicted.
The SJPOA, with which Segovia has been affiliated since 2003, said in a statement to KRON-TV she has been placed on leave during the investigation.
“No additional individual at the POA is involved or had prior knowledge of the alleged acts,” the union said. “The Board of Directors is saddened and disappointed at hearing this news and we have pledged to provide our full support to the investigative authorities.”
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