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Press Release

Wise County Man Sentenced to 60 Months for Trafficking Fentanyl Pills

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Virginia
Aaron Stidham Used Social Media Platforms to Purchase Pressed Pills

ABINGDON, Va. – An Exeter, Virginia man, who conspired to sell pressed pills containing fentanyl purchased from various social media platforms, was sentenced this week to 60 months in federal prison.

Aaron Christopher Stidham, 22, pled guilty in August 2022 to one count of conspiring to distribute and possession with the intent to distribute 40 grams or more of fentanyl.

According to court documents, between February 2021 and February 2022, Stidham ordered 1,000 pills every few weeks from his source in California through the social media platforms Snapchat and Instagram, had them mailed to Big Stone Gap, and then resold them to co-conspirators Paul Mason Perkins of Big Stone Gap, Virginia, Austin Jeremiah Lane, of Norton, Virginia, and Cheyenne Cassie Carico, of Norton, Virginia.

United States Attorney Christopher R. Kavanaugh, Craig B. Kailimai, Special Agent in Charge of the Washington Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Tommy D. Coke, Inspector in Charge of the U.S. Postal Inspection Service - Atlanta Division, made the announcement.

The Wise County Sheriff’s Office, the Norton Police Department, the Southwest Virginia Drug Task Force (consisting of the Wise County Sheriff’s Office, the Scott County Sheriff’s Office, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, the Norton Police Department, the Big Stone Gap Police Department, and the Virginia State Police), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, and the United States Postal Inspection Service investigated the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lena L. Busscher prosecuted the case.

Updated August 16, 2023