CALIFORNIA—Erik Martineau, 50, pleaded guilty in federal court on Thursday, January 9 to distributing fentanyl, methamphetamine and heroin from San Diego to locations throughout the United States. The illegal drugs were mailed in an estimated amount of 7,800 packages through the United States Postal Service.

Martineau, a United States citizen who was residing in Mexico, pleaded guilty before United States Magistrate Judge, Barbara Major, to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances. Martineau faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in custody. Scheduled sentencing will take place on March 30, 2020 at 9 a.m. and be heard by U.S. District Judge, William Q. Hays.

According to Martineau’s plea agreement, he rented a storage unit in San Diego County to package the controlled substances for shipment to various locations in January 2018. The defendant opened a business account at an office supply store to print shipping labels for packages containing the controlled substances.

From January 2018 to June 2019, Martineau packaged approximately 100 packages each week. During the investigation conducted by the United States Postal Inspectors and Homeland Security Investigations, law enforcement seized hundreds of packages containing controlled substances.

“The use of the Postal Service to distribute dangerous drugs, particularly deadly fentanyl, puts the Postal Service and the public at risk,” said U.S. Attorney Robert Brewer. “We are not going to allow drug traffickers to hijack the U.S. Mail.”

Martineau faces maximum penalty of life in prison, including a $10 million fine.