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Press Release

Two Waverly Men Sentenced to Federal Prison for “Dark Web” Counterfeit Carfentanil Pills

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Pills Disguised as Oxycodone Actually Contained Elephant Tranquilizer

Two men who possessed and sold counterfeit carfentanil pills were sentenced today to a total of more than 11 years in federal prison.

Cameron James Lensmeyer, age 20, and Evan Paul Sage, age 20, both from Waverly, Iowa, received the prison terms after their May 2018 guilty pleas.  Lensmeyer pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute carfentanil and marijuana.  Sage pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute carfentanil, cocaine, and marijuana, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

In a plea agreement, Lensmeyer admitted that he and Sage purchased hundreds of purported prescription pills, including purported oxycodone and alprazolam pills, through a “dark web” marketplace.  Evidence at an earlier hearing showed that, during a search of Lensmeyer’s and Sage’s shared Cedar Falls residence in June 2017, investigators seized over 800 blue pills that appeared to be prescription oxycodone pills (depicted below), over $20,000 in cash, over 30 grams of cocaine, over 600 grams of marijuana, and a loaded .32 caliber handgun.  Later testing determined that most of the blue pills contained carfentanil, while a smaller amount contained another synthetic fentanyl called cyclopropyl fentanyl.  Carfentanil is a powerful narcotic that is 10,000 times more potent than morphine and 100 times more potent than fentanyl.  It is not approved for use by humans, but is used as an elephant tranquilizer.

Carfentanil pill

Lensmeyer and Sage were sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge Linda R. Reade.  Lensmeyer was sentenced to 52 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  Sage was sentenced to 85 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a five-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.

Both men are being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until they can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was investigated by the Tri-County Drug Enforcement Task Force and was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Dan Chatham.

Court file information at

The case file number is 18-CR-2004-LRR.

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Updated November 26, 2018

Drug Trafficking