Two charged after drug bust in Eveleth

Approximately one pound of suspected meth and 170 suspected “M30″ fentanyl pills were seized
Published: Mar. 16, 2023 at 1:54 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

EVELETH, MN. (Northern News Now) - Two people were arrested in Eveleth for multiple controlled substance crimes.

According to the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office, Juan Pedro Alapisco-Ochoa, 50, of Mexico, and Rachel Michelle Lofgren, 52, of Eveleth were charged during an arraignment hearing at the St. Louis County Courthouse in Virginia on Monday.

Alapisco-Ochoa was charged with first-degree sales of meth and second-degree sales of fentanyl.

Lofgren was charged with conspiracy to first and second-degree sales of a controlled substance.

This follows an investigation by the Lake Superior Violent Offender Task Force (LSVOTF).

The report states the investigation uncovered evidence indicating both suspects were involved in the sale and distribution of controlled substances from their Eveleth home.

On March 9, a search warrant was executed, and approximately one pound of suspected meth and 170 suspected “M30″ fentanyl pills were seized.

Digital scales and other evidence indicating illicit drug distribution were also taken from the home.

The investigation also discovered the two suspects were receiving large quantities of meth in the mail from the southern U.S.

The Sheriff’s Office released this statement:

“Law enforcement officers nationwide are dealing with millions of fraudulent “M30″ pills that are currently being pressed in Mexico and then smuggled into the United States. These counterfeit pills are often blue in color and stamped with “M30″ markings consistent with oxycodone, however, subsequent analysis reveals that the pills actually contain fentanyl; an extremely dangerous synthetic drug that is fatal in very small doses.”

Alapisco-Ochoa and Lofgren were both arrested.

Deputies say Alapisco-Ochoa provided a false name and identification information to investigators and jail staff.

Fingerprint analysis was able to reveal he was in the U.S. illegally and subject to deportation.

According to the Department of Homeland Security, he had also previously been deported numerous times in the past.

The St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office also released the following statement:

“This investigation highlights the fact that our Iron Range communities are not immune to the current nationwide issues relating to illegal immigration and the massive influx of methamphetamine and fentanyl coming across our southern border. The LSVOTF would like to take this opportunity to remind the general public that the greatest public safety resource we have is each other. We encourage members of the community to get to know their neighbors and the officers that serve your community. If you see suspicious or illegal drug activity, don’t hesitate to share that information with your local law enforcement agency. If you are struggling with addiction yourself, please reach out for help. The Arrowhead Regional Crisis Line is 844-772-4724. When the community and law enforcement stand vigilant together, we can ensure our region remains a safe and great place to live. The LSVOTF would like the thank the United States Postal Inspectors Office, the Dept. of Homeland Security, the Eveleth Police Department, and the St. Louis County Sheriff’s Office for their assistance in this investigation.”