Archive for Thursday, March 18, 2010

Basehor police find drug connection in package

March 18, 2010

When a Basehor resident recently alerted police after finding an unexpected package on her doorstep, little did she know she would supply vital information in an ongoing drug investigation.

Basehor Police Chief Lloyd Martley said police departments in Basehor, Lenexa, Shawnee and Kansas City, Kan., are pursuing the arrest of a 36-year-old Shawnee resident suspected of orchestrating the transfer of drugs and receiving packages of drugs through the mail.

Martley said the Basehor department received a call Friday from a Basehor resident who reported FedEx had delivered a strange package to her house. The package had her address on it, but a company name was displayed on the box.

Having opened the box, Martley said, the woman found a large sealed bucket inside. Feeling something was amiss, she contacted the police.

Police collected the box, Martley said, and began working to trace the return address information. Martley said they soon discovered all the provided return information was false, and the company did not exist.

“It was a totally bogus company,” Martley said.

The address listed for the fake sending company belonged to a junior college in Glendale, Ariz., and the phone number was a Phoenix listing.

Police decided to open the container, Martley said, and found 14 pounds of marijuana within the five-gallon bucket. The department contacted FedEx and quickly found out about the three other police departments’ efforts to stop drug deliveries from the same fake company to residences in their cities. Martley said each package was formatted to look like two companies exchanging cleaning supplies. The packages were usually intercepted after dropoff before homeowners could discover them, he said, but in cases like that of the Basehor resident, the intended drug recipient wasn’t so lucky.

“The suspect would wait and watch the delivery being made, and then he’d grab the package,” Martley said. “But with this woman, she wasn’t home, and her neighbors were outside, so he couldn’t take the box.”

Martley said FedEx reported two additional deliveries were slated for nearby residences before police stopped the process.

The marijuana in the five-gallon bucket alone was worth about $26,800 if sold on the street, Martley said, and if the two other deliveries had been successful, an additional $53,600 in drugs would have entered the area.

“This resident really did the right thing reporting the package to the police,” Martley said.

In total, 12 to 14 packages were delivered from the false company to addresses in the Kansas City metropolitan area, Martley said.

The case has been turned over to the Kansas Bureau of Investigation and the Kansas Attorney General’s Office, Martley said, and no arrests have been made or charges filed at this time.

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