CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A couple who conspired to steal oxycodone and hydrocodone from packages mailed from the Department of Veterans Affairs to veterans and then sold the pills from the stolen packages was sentenced to federal prison today, announced United States Attorney Carol Casto.
Amber Fox, 28, of Lesage in Cabell County, was sentenced to two and a half years in prison after previously pleading guilty to mail theft. David Grove, Jr., 39, of Chillicothe, Ohio, was sentenced to two years in prison after previously pleading guilty to conspiracy to distribute pain pills. Both Fox and Grove were also ordered to pay $453.80 in restitution.
Fox was a federal postal support employee who worked in the Charleston Processing and Distribution Center. She used her job to steal pain pills by identifying packages that contained oxycodone and hydrocodone, specifically packages from the VA to veterans who were prescribed pain medication. Fox admitted that on March 17, 2015, she stole a package that contained 112 hydrocodone pills mailed from the VA to a veteran living in Raleigh County. After stealing the packages, Fox took the pills to the home that she shared with Grove in East Bank in Kanawha County. Together, they took some of the pills themselves and sold the remaining pills. Fox admitted to stealing between 45 and 50 postal packages containing thousands of oxycodone and hydrocodone pills from August 2014 to April 9, 2015. On April 9, 2015, law enforcement executed search warrants at the East Bank residence and located over 500 stolen oxycodone and hydrocodone pills. Both Fox and Grove gave statements admitting their involvement in the mail theft and drug distribution conspiracy. Fox is no longer an employee with the United States Postal Service.
The United States Postal Service, Office of Inspector General, and the Metropolitan Drug Enforcement Network Team conducted the investigation, with assistance from the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. Assistant United States Attorney Erik S. Goes is in charge of the prosecution. United States District Judge John T. Copenhaver, Jr., imposed the sentences.
This case is being prosecuted as part of an ongoing effort led by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia to combat the illicit sale and misuse of prescription drugs and heroin. The U.S. Attorney’s Office, joined by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, is committed to aggressively pursuing and shutting down illegal pill trafficking, eliminating open air drug markets, and curtailing the spread of opiate painkillers and heroin in communities across the Southern District.