How PlayStation box in Novi helped feds seize enough fentanyl ‘to kill entire population of Michigan’

Leader of drug organization pleads guilty to trafficking, money laundering conspiracy

A PlayStation 4 box. (Tomohiro Ohsumi, 2016 Getty Images)

NOVI, Mich. – FBI agents broke down how they used a PlayStation box to track down a drug stash in Novi that led to the seizure of enough fentanyl “to kill the entire population of Michigan.”

Officials said this case dates back to July 2017, when agents with the Drug Enforcement Agency turned to “creative investigative work” and traced a UPC code off of a Sony PlayStation box.

The box had been used by a drug organization to deliver heroin to a customer, according to authorities.

Officials tracked the code to a condominium in Novi, where the PlayStation system was active. During a raid of the condominium, officials said they discovered 30 kilograms of fentanyl and more than $500,000 in cash.

“More than 15 million deadly dosages of fentanyl were seized from this organization,” U.S. Attorney Dawn Ison said. “That is more than enough to kill the entire population of Michigan.”

Agents identified members of the organization who were traveling across the United States to deliver kilograms of drugs, transport bulk currency, or launder money, they said.

Multiple members of the organization were arrested, and the bust led to additional seizures at distribution hubs in Indianapolis and Baltimore.

“Fentanyl is now the leading cause of overdose deaths,” Ison said. “It is inherently dangerous and 50 times more potent than heroin. The number of lives saved by this seizure is infinite. Individuals who traffic deadly drugs in our community will be held accountable for the harm they inflict on our citizens.”

To date, 18 people have been charged in connection with the case, and 16 of them have pleaded guilty, according to authorities. The other two are scheduled to begin trial Nov. 16.

Leader pleads guilty

Maurice Montain McCoy, Jr., 41, of Moreno Valley, California, was identified as the leader of the drug and money laundering operation.

Officials said McCoy “lived lavishly” off the money from the conspiracy, buying a Porsche Panamera, expensive jewelry, diamond and gold pendants, and a half-million-dollar home in the greater Los Angeles area.

McCoy previously served 10 years in federal prison for a drug conviction in California.

He pleaded guilty Thursday (Nov. 3) to drug trafficking and money laundering conspiracy charges. He faces a mandatory 15 years in prison and up to a life sentence, at maximum.

Sentencing is scheduled for March 16.

About the Author:

Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.