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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, September 14, 2018

Man Guilty of Distributing Fentanyl Causing Serious Bodily Injury

ALEXANDRIA, Va. – A Dumfries man pleaded guilty today to distribution of fentanyl causing serious bodily injury, for which he faces a mandatory minimum of 20 years in prison.

“Sorensen placed lives at risk every time he chose to distribute these dangerous and deadly drugs into our communities,” said G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia. “Investigating and prosecuting heroin and fentanyl trafficking crimes is a top priority of this office as we continue to battle this deadly epidemic.”

According to court records, Christopher Louis Sorensen, 31, admitted that in February 2018 he distributed fentanyl to a female friend who later suffered respiratory arrest, a life-threatening condition that required medical intervention, including CPR and Narcan, a life-saving opioid overdose reversal drug used by first responders.

“Fentanyl is a dangerous drug that can kill a user after just one use and have widespread negative effects on our communities,” said Matthew J. DeSarno, Special Agent in Charge, Criminal Division, FBI Washington Field Office. “This plea is just one example of the substantial work the FBI is doing with partners across the region to stem the flow of opioids into our neighborhoods.”

According to the statement of facts, Sorensen admitted that from 2015 to 2018, he sold over 400 grams of fentanyl, which he purchased from drug dealers in Baltimore. Additionally, Sorensen admitted that from 2009 to 2018, he sold over 5,000 tablets of 30 milligram oxycodone pills, acquired from a medical provider in Maryland, and filled by a pharmacy in the Eastern District of Virginia, and often sold the tablets in the vicinity of the pharmacy that filled the prescription.

Sorensen pleaded guilty to distribution of fentanyl causing serious bodily injury, and faces a mandatory minimum of 20 years and a maximum penalty of life in prison when sentenced on December 21, 2018. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, and Nancy McNamara, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, made the announcement after Senior U.S. District Judge T.S. Ellis III accepted the plea. Assistant U.S. Attorney James L. Trump and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Kaitlin Paulson are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:18-cr-237.

Topic(s): 
Drug Trafficking
Opioids
Contact: 
Joshua Stueve Director of Communications joshua.stueve@usdoj.gov
Updated September 20, 2018