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Five Defendants Indicted in Prescription Drugs Case

(Phoenix, Ariz. – Nov. 1, 2006) Attorney General Terry Goddard today announced an 11-count indictment against five defendants on charges of fraud, theft and possession of a narcotic drug for sale and other charges.

Richard James Solano, Ryan Eugene Lodge, Amoreena Sneed Becher and Nicolas Mark DeGroot were indicted on charges of conspiring to obtain and later sell prescription narcotic drugs. A fifth defendant has been indicted but has not yet been served with the charges.

According to the indictment, between June and December 2005, Solano and Lodge, both 22, used their positions as pharmacy technicians at a CVS Pharmacy to obtain patient and doctor information to forge prescriptions. At the time of their arrest, Solano and Lodge were in possession of various types of narcotic drugs, including morphine, codeine, carisoprodol and diazepam valued at more than $25,000.

Solano, of Chandler, and Lodge, of Phoenix, were indicted on one count each of fraud, theft, possession of narcotic for sale, possession of a dangerous drug for sale, illegally conducting an enterprise, obtaining a narcotic by fraud and forgery.

Becher, 18, and DeGroot, 19, both of Chandler, were indicted on one count each of possession of a narcotic drug, possession of a dangerous drug and tampering with evidence.

The indictment is the result of an investigation by the Attorney General’s Office, Chandler Police Department, CVS Pharmacy security personnel, U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Payson Police Department.

If convicted on all charges, Solano and Lodge face up to 40 years in prison. Becher and DeGroot face up to 20 years in prison. Assistant Attorney General Steve Duplissis is prosecuting this case.