U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Oregon has issued the following statement: EUGENE, Ore.— The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of Oregon made the announcement that two individuals from California had been sentenced to federal prison for smuggling huge quantities of heroin and methamphetamine from their home state to the state of Oregon. Jack Scott Lewis, 36 years old and a resident of Los Angeles, was given a sentence of 120 months in federal prison as well as five years of supervised release today.
Michael Panoosi, 56, also of California, was found guilty of helping Lewis commit the crime on June 6, 2022, and he was sentenced to 210 months in federal prison followed by five years of supervised release. According to the court documents, in December 2019, the Douglas Interagency Narcotics Team (DINT) began an investigation into Panoosi, a drug dealer based in California, for allegedly transporting large quantities of methamphetamine from California to Oregon for the purpose of distribution and sale in the counties of Douglas, Jackson, Josephine, and Lane. Investigators discovered that Panoosi would transport several dozens of pounds of methamphetamine on each trip from California and that he was known to hire a driver to transport and deliver drugs in addition to transporting them himself.
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Panoosi had a history of many drug convictions in the past. On the 11th of October, 2020, Panoosi, Lewis, and another individual was seen travelling through Northern California towards the direction of Oregon. In Douglas County, DINT investigators conducted a stop and search of the group’s car. During the search, they discovered one pound of heroin and 46 pounds of methamphetamine. The detectives searched Lewis’s backpack and located additional methamphetamine along with three pistols. Two of the firearms had ammunition in them, two of them had their serial numbers scratched out, and one of them had an extended magazine.
In Panoosi’s rucksack, police discovered a second weapon as well as materials for packaging drugs. Indictments were handed down by a federal grand jury in Eugene on October 15, 2020, accusing Lewis and Panoosi of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute it as well as possessing weapons in furtherance of a narcotics trafficking felony. The indictments were returned to the court. Panoosi entered a guilty plea on March 8, 2022, admitting that he had methamphetamine with the intent to distribute it. After some time had passed, on June 6, 2022, Lewis entered a guilty plea to the original charge. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) of the United States as well as DINT conducted an investigation into this matter. Jeffrey S. Sweet, Assistant United States Attorney for the District of Oregon, was in charge of the prosecution of this case.
The Douglas Interagency Narcotics Team is a specialised investigative unit that was established in October 1989 with the purpose of combating illegal narcotics activities in Douglas County. The team’s name comes from the month in which it was established. Members of the DINT include the Roseburg Police Department, the Oregon National Guard, the Oregon State Police, and the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office and District Attorney’s Offices. Other members include the Oregon State Police and the Oregon State Police.