Two U.S. Marines stationed at Camp Pendleton and three civilians have been charged in connection with distributing narcotics, allegedly leading to the death of another Marine, federal officials announced Tuesday.
The 14-count federal grand jury indictment charges one Marine and the three civilians with conspiring to distribute narcotics, including oxycodone pills that were laced with fentanyl, to both civilians and Marines. The second Marine is charged with being an accessory after the fact, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California.
Jordan Nicholas McCormick, 26, of Palmdale, is described as the lead defendant and the alleged supplier who provided LSD, ecstasy, cocaine and the laced pills.
Gustavo Jaciel Solis, 24, of Sylmar, allegedly distributed McCormick’s drugs to civilians and military personnel, officials said.
Anthony Ruben Whisenant, 20, a lance corporal, allegedly distributed narcotics to active service members, including the active-duty Marine who died after ingesting a laced pill purchased from Solis.
Jessica Sarah Perez, 23, of Pacoima, allegedly distributed narcotics, including fentanyl and cocaine, to civilian customers, officials said.
Ryan Douglas White, 22, a lance corporal in the United States Marine Corps, is charged with being an accessory after the fact for allegedly attempting to hinder the apprehension of Whisenant and Solis.
Whisenant and White were arrested Tuesday and are expected to appear in federal court in Los Angeles.
Solis and Perez were indicted on Aug. 11 on fentanyl and cocaine distribution charges, while Solis was indicted on firearms-related charges, officials said.
They both pleaded not guilty and their trial date is scheduled for Oct. 26.
The conspiracy went on between November 2019 and September 2020, and involved multiple sales of fentanyl-laced oxycodone to an undercover buyer, often for more than $1,000 per buy, according to the indictment.
On May 22, Solis allegedly sold 10 of the laced pills to an active-duty Marine who died the following morning of a drug overdose, officials said.
McCormick, Solis, Whisenant and Perez all face charges of distribution of narcotics. McCormick and Solis are also charged with possessing firearms in furtherance of drug crimes, officials said.
McCormick and Solis face a minimum of 10 years in prison and a maximum of life imprisonment if convicted as charged.
Whisenant and Perez face a maximum of 20 years in prison if convicted, while White faces a maximum of 10 years in prison.
The conspiracy was investigated by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI, the U.S. Postal Inspection Service and the Ventura County Sheriff’s Office, officials said.