OXFORD, Maine — The Maine Drug Enforcement Agency on Tuesday announced the arrests and charges of 15 people in what officials are calling likely the largest drug investigation in the history of Oxford County.
Arrested and facing a charge of conspiracy to commit aggravated trafficking in scheduled drugs, a Class B felony, are: Brian Aquino, 34, of Massachusetts; Del Hathaway, 26 of Saco; Brianna Thayer, 26, of Tennessee; Brandon Blood, 23, of Bethel; Morgan McKinney, 20, of Bethel; Dana Ingerson, 29, of Buckfield; Courtney Moulton, 23, of Tennessee; Scott Billings, 24, of Milton Plantation; Kevin Litchfield, 28, of Oxford; Richard Labay, 38, of West Paris; Michael Farnum, 28, of Bethel; Jacob Santillo, 25, of Rumford; Gregory Ford, 54, of Scarborough; Cameron Gervais, 26, of South Portland and Matthew Ross, 23, of Westbrook, according to Department of Public Safety Spokesman Stephen McCausland.
All suspects, with the exception of Ford, Ross and Gervais, are also facing a charge of aggravated trafficking in scheduled drugs, a Class A felony, McCausland said.
McCausland said the investigation spanned two years and the 15 suspects were allegedly responsible for the importation and distribution of 17.8 pounds of heroin throughout Oxford County. That marks the equivalent of 80,000 doses and a street value of $3.2 million.
McCausland said the case was presented to a grand jury last Friday, resulting in charges for all 15 suspects.
The investigation ensued in November 2013 after information was provided to drug agents by state police following a traffic stop. The investigation revealed that Hathaway and his girlfriend, Thayer, were the main suppliers of heroin, McCausland said. The couple’s alleged supplier was Aquino.
Hathaway had moved to Saco from Lowell, Massachusetts, to oversee the drug operation, McCausland said. The investigation included a large amount of undercover purchases of oxycodone and heroin from several of the suspects.
According to MDEA director Roy McKinney, a large bulk of Oxford County law enforcement agencies were vital in the investigation, while assisting out-of-state agencies included police departments from Lynn, Massachusetts, Bean Station, Tennessee, Massachusetts Probation and Parole and Massachusetts State Police Fugitive Apprehension Division.