A Montebello man is expected to plead not guilty Tuesday to federal charges of providing a woman with a fatal dose of the synthetic opioid fentanyl.
Edwin Oliva, 28, was charged last month in Los Angeles federal court with distribution of fentanyl resulting in death, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Oliva has been in federal custody since his March 6 arrest. He was subsequently indicted on three felony counts: possession with intent to distribute heroin, possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, and carrying a firearm and possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. Those counts, to which he previously pleaded not guilty, are included in the updated four-count indictment, which adds the distribution of fentanyl resulting in death count.
According to an affidavit, Oliva told law enforcement officials that the unnamed victim was an acquaintance who arrived at his home shortly after midnight on Feb. 28.
Oliva allegedly gave the victim drugs, which resulted in a fatal overdose, and admitted to law enforcement that fentanyl was the drug he gave the victim, according to court documents. A pathologist employed by the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner concluded the victim died as a result of the effects of fentanyl and alcohol, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
If convicted of the charge of distribution of fentanyl resulting in death, Oliva would face a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in federal prison and a statutory maximum sentence of life imprisonment. The heroin-related offense carries a mandatory minimum 10-year sentence and a potential sentence of life in prison.