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Press Release

Two Additional Defendants Charged in Juvenile Overdose Case

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Texas

Two more defendants have been charged in the drug conspiracy that claimed the lives of three teenagers, announced U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Texas Leigha Simonton.

Roberta Alexander Gaitan, 20, and Rafael Soliz, Jr., 22, were charged in a superseding indictment filed in March with conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance; Mr. Gaitan was also charged with distribution of a controlled substance to a person under 21 years of age. The charges were unsealed on Tuesday, immediately following the defendants’ arrests. They made their initial appearances before U.S. Magistrate Judge Renee Toliver on Friday and were both ordered detained pending trial.

According to the indictment, Mr. Gaitan and Mr. Soliz allegedly conspired with Jason Xavier Villanueva, Donovan Jude Andrews, Stephan Paul Brinson, Magaly Mejia Cano, and Luis Eduardo Navarrete to traffic counterfeit opioid pills laced with fentanyl to young teens, often via juvenile dealers.

To date, members of the conspiracy are tied to at least 12 juvenile overdoses – three of them fatal – in Carrollton and Flower Mound. The victims span the ages of 13 to 17. The deadly drugs were often advertised via social media.

An indictment is merely an allegation of criminal conduct, not evidence. All conspirators are presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

If convicted, the defendants face up to 20 years each in federal prison.

The Drug Enforcement Administration’s Dallas Field Office and the Carrollton Police Department conducted the investigation with the assistance of School Resource Officers from the Carrollton – Farmer’s Branch Independent School District and the Lewisville Independent School District. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Phelesa Guy and Rick Calvert are prosecuting the case.

Note: Illicitly produced, fentanyl-laced pills often look similar to legitimate prescription pills like Oxycontin or Percocet, but can pose significantly more danger. On the street, these pills are often referred to as “M30s” (a reference to the markings on some of the pills), “blues,” “perks,” “yerks,” “china girls,” or “TNT.” DEA research shows that six out of ten pills laced with fentanyl contain a potentially lethal dose. One pill can kill. For resources, visit



Erin Dooley 
Press Officer 

Updated May 12, 2023

Drug Trafficking