Fentanyl-laced heroin found in Georgia bust, cops say; 3 arrested

Justin Arroyo (from left), Lurise Billings, Randy Rice )Photo: Cherokee County Sheriff's Office)
Caption
Justin Arroyo (from left), Lurise Billings, Randy Rice )Photo: Cherokee County Sheriff's Office)

After undercover agents from the Cherokee County Multi-Agency Narcotics Squad already had made drug buys in an ongoing case, three people were arrested as they met to finish a deal for fentanyl-laced heroin, authorities said Tuesday.

>> Read more trending news

Agents arrested Justin Arroyo, 31, of Woodstock, on Nov. 2 after they put his room at a Woodstock motel under surveillance, Jay Baker, spokesman for the sheriff’s office, said in a news release.

“Almost immediately, Arroyo and his companion, Lurise Billings, 28, of Woodstock, came out of the room, got into a car and drove away,” Baker said. “CMANS agents followed and watched as another suspect, later identified as Randy Rice, 39, of Woodstock, arrived and got in the car with Arroyo and Billings.

“Agents moved in to arrest Arroyo and interrupted a heroin sale.”

Fentanyl is more potent than heroin or morphine and is associated with accidental overdoses of first responders across the country, Baker said.

Agents found about 15 grams of heroin after searching Arroyo’s motel room and two vehicles, Baker said. They also found 5.1 grams of suspected methamphetamine, 75 Xanax tablets, 38 hydrocodone tablets and five buprenorphine tablets.

In late October, CMANS undercover agents had made multiple purchases of suspected heroin from Arroyo, Baker said.

Charges against Arroyo include two counts of selling heroin, two counts of selling fentanyl, trafficking heroin and possession of hydrocodone, Xanax and methamphetamine with intent to distribute.

Billings’ charges include two counts of sale of heroin/fentanyl mix, trafficking heroin and possession of hydrocodone and Xanax with intent to distribute.

Arroyo and Billings are in the Cherokee County Adult Detention Center without bond, according to Baker.

Rice was charged with criminal attempt to possess heroin and is in the Cherokee County Jail on $3,500 bond.

About the Authors