Department of Justice
Office of Public Affairs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 12, 2013

Angelina County Man Sentenced for Purchasing Cold Pills in East Texas

               BEAUMONT, Texas – A45-year-old Lufkin, Texas man has been sentenced to federal prison for drug trafficking violations in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales today.

              Mark Dwaine Helton pleaded guilty on Oct. 31, 2012, to possession of pseudoephedrine with intent to manufacture methamphetamine and was sentenced to78 months in federal prison today by U.S. District Judge Ron Clark.

                According to information presented in court, on Oct. 12, 2011, Helton purchased cold pills containing pseudoephedrine at a Walmart store in Lufkin with the intent to manufacture methamphetamine.  During the investigation, it was determined that from August 2011 to April 2012, Helton purchased cold pills containing pseudoephedrine on seven separate occasions from a Lufkin Wal-Mart, once from a Nacogdoches, Texas CVS pharmacy and eight separate times from a Lufkin Walgreens pharmacy.  The average person attempting to correct sinus de-congestion problems is believed to purchase only one or two boxes of the product per year.  Helton and seven others were indicted on Aug. 15, 2012 and charged with federal drug trafficking violations.   

              This case was investigated by the FBI, Texas Department of Public Safety Criminal Investigations Division and the Lufkin Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Randall L. Fluke.

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