9 suspects arrested in $1 million LaPlace prescription drug ring - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

9 suspects arrested in $1 million LaPlace prescription drug ring

The St. John Parish Sheriff's Office recovered more than 100,000 Xanax pills during their investigation. (FOX 8) The St. John Parish Sheriff's Office recovered more than 100,000 Xanax pills during their investigation. (FOX 8)
LAPLACE, LA (WVUE) -

The St. John Sheriff's Office has broken up a million dollar Xanax ring and arrested nine suspects.

The ring used a computer currency to sell the drug nationwide, according to investigators.

Sheriff Mike Tregre said it is one of the largest drug crackdowns his office has ever been involved in.  

Nine people have been arrested, including the alleged ringleader, Matthew Helms, 23. He was taken into custody on Jan. 5.

Officers executed a search warrant around 1:16 p.m. in the 100 block of Oak Fern Court in LaPlace. Detectives found approximately 100,000 pills of Xanax, and packaging for distribution.

Officers also arrested Megan De St. Germaine, 26, who also lived at the residence.

Around 1:52 p.m., officers searched a residence in the 500 block of Walnut St. in LaPlace. Detectives discovered more than 10,400 doses of Xanax and packaging for distribution, the sheriff said.

Brandon Zar, 24 was arrested. Zar lives at the residence.

Based on the investigation, detectives obtained warrants for six more suspects for attempt or conspire to distribute or possess with intent to distribute schedule IV CDS.

Detectives booked Helms with possession with intent to distribute Xanax, possession of drug paraphernalia, possession of suboxone, and possession of marijuana.

He remains in custody in lieu of a $311,500 bond.

De St. Germaine was booked on the same charges. She is being held on an $83,000 bond.

Helms was arrested six times in St. John Parish since April 2012.

Others booked include:

  • Zar with possession with intent to distribute alprazolam and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was released from jail 1/13/2015 on a $51,500 bond. Zar was arrested five times in St. John the Baptist Parish since November 2010.
  • Austin Hammond, 20, of LaPlace with attempt or conspire to distribute or possess with intent to distribute schedule IV CDS, possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia. He was released from jail 1/15/2016 on a $53,000 bond.
  • Courtney Simon, 20, of LaPlace with attempt or conspire to distribute or possess with intent to distribute schedule IV CDS. She was released from jail 1/13/2016 on a $50,000 bond.
  • Joshua Sutton, 23, of LaPlace with attempt or conspire to distribute or possess with intent to distribute schedule IV CDS. He remains in custody in lieu of a $50,000 bond.
  • Katie Cahill, 22, of LaPlace with attempt or conspire to distribute or possess with intent to distribute schedule IV CDS. She was released from jail 1/13/2016 on a $50,000 bond.
  • Michael Keller, 20, of St. James with attempt or conspire to distribute or possess with intent to distribute schedule IV CDS. He was released from jail 1/13/2016 on a $50,000 bond.
  • Pamela De St.Germaine, 51, of LaPlace with attempt or conspire to distribute or possess with intent to distribute schedule IV CDS. She was released from jail 1/13/2016 on a $10,000 bond.

The sheriff did not elaborate on what kind of electronic currency the suspects used in a news release.

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