Fitchburg Woman and Saugus Man Sentenced for Roles in Counterfeit Steroid Conspiracy
BOSTON – A Fitchburg woman and a Saugus man were sentenced today in federal court in Boston for their roles in a steroid trafficking conspiracy.
Elizabeth Green, 30, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Allison D. Burroughs to two years of probation. In December 2017, Green pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances. Brian Petzke, 49, was sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge Nathaniel M. Gorton to two years in prison and two years of supervised release. In February 2018, Petzke pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute controlled substances. Petzke and six others, including Green’s sister, were charged in April 2017 for their roles in the conspiracy. Green was later charged by Information.
From approximately May 2015 until April 12, 2017, the conspirators manufactured steroid products made from raw materials that they purchased overseas and marketed as “Onyx” steroids using “Onyx” labels that were also ordered from overseas suppliers. Onyx, now owned by Amgen Inc., is a legitimate pharmaceutical company that does not manufacture steroids.
The defendants sold the steroids to customers across the United States using email and social media platforms, collected payment through money remitters, such as Western Union and MoneyGram, and used false identifications and multiple remitter locations to pick up the proceeds. Some of the defendants laundered proceeds from the steroid sales through Wicked Tan LLC, a tanning business in Beverly, which they owned and operated specifically to launder the proceeds of the steroid operation.
Green’s role in the conspiracy was to collect customer payments from money remitters using false identifications and provide those proceeds to another member of the organization. Green retrieved more than $220,000 in customer payments for steroid purchases.
Petzke’s principal roles in the conspiracy were receiving packages containing raw steroid powder; shipping steroids to customers throughout the United States at the direction of co-defendants Tyler Baumann and Phillip Goodwin; and picking up steroid proceeds from money remitters at the direction of Baumann and Goodwin.
Baumann and Goodwin each pleaded guilty and were sentenced in March 2018 to 10 years and 130 months in prison, respectively.
United States Attorney Andrew E. Lelling; Peter C. Fitzhugh, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; Delany De Leon-Colon, Acting Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service; and Jeffrey Ebersole, Special Agent in Charge of the Food and Drug Administration, Office of Criminal Investigations, New York Field Office, made the announcement. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Amy Harman Burkart and David J. D’Addio of Lelling’s Cybercrime Unit are prosecuting the cases.