Windsor men accused of selling 'oxycodone' that's really fentanyl

·3 min read

Jul. 1—Four Windsor men were arrested Wednesday on federal drug distribution charges, including allegations that they sold fake oxycodone pills actually containing fentanyl, a far more potent and dangerous opioid than oxycodone.

A federal agent's affidavit describes two of the men — brothers Michael Lee, 24, of 84 Skitchewaug St. and Alexander Lee, 21, of 43 Graham Road — as "multi-thousand tablet quantity wholesale and retail resellers of counterfeit oxycodone tablets." Both are being held without bond, authorities say.

In the affidavit, Special Agent John G. Gray of the Drug Enforcement Administration describes the other two men — Daryl Beaufort, 24, of 598 Bloomfield Ave. and Justin Little, 24, of 230 Windsor Ave., Apt. 5 — as "retail level" dealers, supplied by Michael Lee. Beaufort and Little were released on bonds, authorities say.

FAKE PILLS

DEFENDANTS: Brothers Michael Lee, 24, of 84 Skitchewaug St., Windsor and Alexander Lee, 21, of 43 Graham Road, Windsor, both suspected of being large-scale wholesale and retail dealers of fake oxycodone pills containing fentanyl; Daryl Beaufort, 24, of 598 Bloomfield Ave., Windsor and Justin Little, 24, of 230 Windsor Ave., Apt. 5, Windsor, suspected of being smaller retail dealers.

STATUS: The Lees are being held without bond while the other two defendants are free on bond.

All four defendants were charged with conspiring to possessing controlled substances with the intent to distribute them, and with actually doing so, authorities say.

The story started in January 2020 when Enfield police learned that someone from Connecticut was going to Arizona and mailing back counterfeit oxycodone pills, according to the agent. He described ensuing events as follows:

During that investigation, Hartford DEA agents learned that a second man was receiving shipments of fake oxycodone pills from Arizona.

On April 29, 2021, the second man and two passengers, on their way back from California, were stopped in Oklahoma with about 30,000 suspected fentanyl tablets.

Hartford DEA agents subsequently learned through social media posts and other sources that the lead suspect in that case was associated with Alexander Lee. Videos from the man's Snapchat account showed him with Alexander Lee as Lee displayed guns and fake oxycodone pills.

This Feb. 4, authorities learned that a "Priority Mail Express" package addressed to a non-existent man was on its way from California to Alexander Lee's address.

After a narcotics detecting dog gave a "passive alert" to the package, authorities obtained a search warrant, opened the package, and found — inside multiple layers of packaging and other wrapping — more than 15,000 tablets containing fentanyl.

Investigators learned that the Lee brothers were in California and suspected they may have mailed the package.

Surveillance video from a Los Angeles post office lobby showed three people with packages similar to the intercepted one. They were wearing masks, but two looked to Gray like Michael and Alexander Lee.

Also, Alexander Lee posted a picture of himself on social media that day "wearing unique and distinctive clothing which was identical to the clothing worn in the Los Angeles post office surveillance video," the agent wrote.

He said fellow law enforcement officers had told him that California is a "source area" for fake oxycodone tablets produced in large quantities in Mexico. The abundant supply of the drugs in that area results in low prices, and they can be resold at a much higher price in Connecticut, he explained.

The agent went on to detail a number of controlled drug purchases from defendants by confidential informant — as well as other suspected drug transactions they were involved in.

In addition to the more than 15,000 fentanyl tablets seized from the mail, contraband found during the investigation included more than 1,800 alprazolam tablets, often sold as Xanax, about 25 pounds of marijuana, seven guns, and thousands of dollars in cash, authorities say.

For updates on Glastonbury, and recent crime and courts coverage in North-Central Connecticut, follow Alex Wood on Twitter: @AlexWoodJI1, Facebook: Alex Wood, and Instagram: @AlexWoodJI.