SAN DIEGO — A San Diego man who conspired to distribute 400 grams and more of fentanyl was sentenced in federal court Friday to 150 months, prosecutors said.
Anthony Souza, 46, of Ocean Beach, distributed fentanyl that resulted in the fatal overdose of another Ocean Beach man, 28-year-old Chad Stevens, Kelly Thornton with the Office of the United States Attorney Southern District of California stated in a news release. Souza’s co-defendant Alyson Marie Vaccacio, 32, also plead guilty to conspiracy to distribute 40 grams and more of fentanyl and 500 grams and more of cocaine.
Souza admitted to giving four counterfeit M-30 pills laced with fentanyl, also known as “blues,” to Stevens on Nov. 21, 2019, which resulted in a near-fatal overdose, according to his plea agreement. Around six months later, Souza distributed the same drugs to Stevens, but this time it turned fatal.
Despite Stevens’ death, Souza continued to sell “blues” until June 24, 2020, when law enforcement seized $2,460 in U.S. currency, 115 grams of cocaine and 183 counterfeit “blues” and arrested Vaccacio, Souza’s plea agreement read.
“The days of recreational drug use need to be over,” U.S. Attorney Randy Grossman said. “We know from the DEA’s analysis of seized pills that more than 40 percent of counterfeit pills contain a deadly amount of fentanyl. We can’t say it enough. With fentanyl there is no such thing as a ‘safe’ recreational drug.”
Vaccacio’s sentencing date is set for Dec. 5, 2022.