Authorities target suspected steroid dealer's money

A Medford man accused of illegally selling steriods both locally and across several states is facing forfeiture of $64,000 he allegedly made from drug sales, according to court documents filed by a Medford police detective.

Police raided the Cedar Links home of Rafael R. Fernandez on Feb 6 after being tipped off in July 2012 by a confidential source that Fernandez "was heavily involved in the sale of anabolic steriods," said Detective Mark Cromwell, in a declaration filed Thursday in Medford's U.S. District Court.

"Several hundred doses of various stypes of steriods, several hundred doses of pills suspected to be Viagra, 1.8 pounds of a white powder suspected to be bulk Viagra, scales, empty capsules, and a capsule machine were located at Fernandez's residence during the search," Cromwell's statement said.

Fernandez was arrested in February on charges of delivery, manufacture and possession of steroids, delivery, manufacture and possession of Viagra and delivery and manufacture of Cialis. Delivery and manufacture of steroids is a felony under Oregon law. The rest of the charges were misdemeanors.

At the time, investigators said it was likely the largest steroid bust in Medford police history.

Cromwell said Fernandez admitted to an Oregon State Police detective that he had been selling steriods, Viagra and Cialis for the past two years and that he shipped the substances to customers, packaged in boxes bearing the name Superior Lab. He didn't meet his customers in person, but communicated via text message. According to court documents, Fernandez was paid by money orders, which he cashed and deposited into his accounts at several banks and a credit union.

Cromwell seized $37,982 from Fernandez's Umpqua Bank account, which had numerous cash deposits from seven different branch locations in Washington and Oregon.

Cromwell also seized $25,718 from a Northwest Community Credit Union account that he says represents proceeds from the steroid distribution. Only a single $100 deposit appeared to be non-drug related, Cromwell said.

Fernandez also had an account with Wells Fargo that had more than $15,000 in cash deposited in a month's time, Cromwell said.

— Sanne Specht

Read more in Saturday's Mail Tribune.

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