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Undercover investigation leads to huge fentanyl seizure


November 22, 2019

ST. PAUL — Felony drug charges are expected in the coming days for two men following their arrests last night during a Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) narcotics investigation. BCA agents arrested the men during an undercover operation in Duluth that the Carlton County Sheriff's Office assisted with.

Both were booked into the St. Louis County Jail on probable cause drug charges.

Raymond Valentino Bowser, 35, of Chicago, Illinois.

Denzel Lavon Hale, 29, of Duluth.

During one of three search warrants also executed in Duluth during last night’s operation, BCA agents seized 80 grams of suspected pure fentanyl powder. The powder is being sent to the BCA drug laboratory for analysis.

“Fentanyl is up to 100 times stronger than morphine and only a few milligrams can kill a person,” said BCA Superintendent Drew Evans. “The drugs seized during this operation would have been enough to kill more than 26,000 people.”

This marks the largest single seizure of fentanyl in Minnesota in 2019.

Bowser and Hale are expected to be charged in St. Louis County District Court in the coming days. Additional information will be available in the criminal complaint.

The BCA was assisted by the Carlton County Sheriff’s Office, the Lake Superior Drug and Violent Crime Task Force, the Superior Police Department and the FBI.


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