U.S. Attorney's Office Joins in Recognizing 40th Annual National Crime Victims' Rights Week, April 18-24, 2021
WASHINGTON – Scott M. Kerin, Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Oregon, was one of several prosecutors and investigators recognized today by Acting Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Administrator Uttam Dhillon for their work investigating a transnational opiate trafficking organization.
Kerin and his colleagues were given the prestigious Administrator’s Award for Outstanding Group Achievement in a ceremony today in Washington.
This case came to the attention of law enforcement as part of “Operational Denial,” an Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation into the international trafficking of fentanyl and other legal drugs, and was significantly aided by the national and international coordination of agencies led by DEA’s Special Operations Division (SOD). The operation started in North Dakota in January 2015 as an overdose investigation. To date, 32 defendants have been charged as a result of the investigation.
This case jointly investigated by DEA; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI); U.S. Postal Inspection Service; IRS Criminal Investigations; Grand Forks Narcotics Task Force; Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP); Portland Police Bureau (PPB), Drugs and Vice Division; Portland HIDTA Interdiction Task Force; Oregon State Police (OSP); and the Grand Forks, North Dakota Police Department.
Christopher C. Myers, U.S. Attorney for the District of North Dakota; Assistant U.S. Attorney Kerin; and Trial Attorney Adrienne Rose of the Criminal Division’s Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs Section are prosecuting the case.
This case was brought as part of the Justice Department’s Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) program, the centerpiece of the department’s strategy for reducing the availability of drugs in the U.S. OCDETF was established in 1982 to mount a comprehensive attack on drug trafficking by disrupting and dismantling major drug trafficking and money laundering organizations. Today, OCDETF combines the resources and expertise of its member federal agencies in coordination with state and local law enforcement.