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Press Release

Montebello Man Sentenced to More Than 33 Years in Prison for Causing Fentanyl Overdose that Resulted in Woman’s Death

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of California

          LOS ANGELES – A Montebello man who provided a lethal dose of fentanyl to a victim was sentenced today to 400 months in federal prison.

          Edwin Oliva, 30, was sentenced by United States District Judge André Birotte Jr.

          Oliva pleaded guilty in September 2021 to one count of distribution of fentanyl resulting in death and one count of possession with intent to distribute heroin. He has been in federal custody since March 2019.

          During the early hours of February 28, 2019, Oliva gave the victim a line of drugs to snort and did not tell her the substance was fentanyl – a powerful synthetic opioid. Believing the substance to be cocaine, the victim ingested the drug, which resulted in a fatal overdose.

          Oliva did not call 911 or otherwise seek medical care for the victim until nearly six hours after texting a friend that the victim was not breathing.

          In the nearly six hours between when Oliva learned that the victim was not breathing and when he ultimately called 911, he cleaned his apartment, removing the fentanyl and other evidence of drug trafficking. He placed these items in the trunk of his significant other’s car and then drove away from the apartment in attempt to hide it from law enforcement.

          Later that day, Montebello Police officers executed a search warrant on the car and discovered 1.9 kilograms (4.2 pounds) of heroin, 21 grams of fentanyl, 1.4 kilograms (3.2 pounds) of marijuana, 0.4 grams of methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, a loaded .45-caliber semiautomatic pistol, a blue flip phone he used to conduct drug transactions, and a notebook he used as a pay/owe ledger.

          While in custody in March 2019, Oliva directed his significant other to destroy evidence in the case, and he also directed her to tell law enforcement that the blue flip phone was a play phone for their children.

          The Drug Enforcement Administration and the Montebello Police Department investigated this matter.

          Assistant United States Attorneys Maria Jhai and Kathrynne Seiden of the General Crimes Section prosecuted this case.

Contact

Ciaran McEvoy
Public Information Officer
United States Attorney’s Office
Central District of California (Los Angeles)
ciaran.mcevoy@usdoj.gov
(213) 894-4465

Updated January 7, 2022

Topic
Opioids
Press Release Number: 22-002