‘Main Source of Supply’ Arrested in Carrollton Juvenile Fentanyl Case

The man authorities say was the source of the fentanyl that contributed to three teens’ deaths in Carrollton and seven more overdoses over the past six months has been arrested.

Jason Xavier Villanueva, 22, has been charged with conspiracy to distribute a Schedule II controlled substance in connection with the case that saw the recent arrests of Luis Eduardo Navarrete, 21, and Magaly Mejia Cano, 29, for their roles in running a drug-dealing operation out of a house in Carrollton near R.L. Turner High School.

During a news conference, Leigha Simonton, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas, said Villanueva was the “main source of supply in the Carrollton juvenile overdose cases.” Simonton also said that Villanueva “worked through a juvenile dealer” to supply pills to Navarrete and Cano. Each of the victims was between the ages of 13 and 17.

Fentanyl-related arrests have become regular occurrences in North Texas. The Carrollton arrests come after Simonton announced multiple other fentanyl arrests in North Texas in January.

Simonton, joined by DEA Dallas Special Agent in Charge Eduardo Chávez and Carrollton Police Chief Roberto Arredondo, said that Villanueva actively used social media to communicate with juvenile dealers he supplied with pills stamped “M30.” The criminal complaint contains screenshots of messages from social media apps between Villanueva and some of his juvenile clients.

Following the arrest of Navarrete and Cano last week, Villanueva allegedly posted this message to one of the social media accounts that authorities were monitoring: “Only thing that’s gonna stop us is feds.”

The complaint also gives details on the aftermath experienced by some of the teenagers who survived after taking fentanyl allegedly provided by Villanueva. One 15-year-old female spent multiple days in the hospital on a ventilator following “a medical emergency consistent with the adverse effects of fentanyl,” the complaint states.

Authorities began investigating after a rash of medical emergencies with suspected connections to fentanyl among students in the Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD. Fentanyl is a cheaply manufactured synthetic opioid that can be up to 100 times more potent than morphine. According to the criminal complaint against Navarrete and Cano, the fentanyl pills were being distributed as popular opioids OxyContin and Percocet, but had been laced with fentanyl.

Chavez of the DEA said the investigation is ongoing. Villanueva made his initial federal court appearance on Wednesday, and Navarrete and Cano are still being held from their arrests last week.


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