FARGO — Canada has extradited two men to the United States as part of efforts by U.S. officials to prosecute individuals suspected of international fentanyl trafficking.
Jason Joey Berry, 37, of Montreal, Quebec, and Xuan Cahn Nguyen, 41, of Pointe-Aux-Tremble, Quebec, arrived in North Dakota on Wednesday, Jan. 6.
Both made their initial appearance and arraignment in U.S. District Court on Thursday, according to federal prosecutors.
According to the U.S. Attorney's Office:
Berry and Nguyen were extradited in connection with a superseding indictment in the District of North Dakota charging them with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and controlled substance analogues resulting in serious bodily injury and death, and conspiracy to import controlled substances and controlled substance analogues into the U.S. resulting in serious bodily injury and death.
The superseding indictment also charges Nguyen with international money laundering conspiracy.
The extradition comes as part of "Operation Denial," an investigation into the international trafficking of fentanyl and other lethal drugs, and was significantly aided by the national and international coordination led by the multi-agency Special Operations Division near Washington, D.C., as part of "Operation Deadly Merchant."
The investigation started in North Dakota on Jan. 3, 2015, with the fatal overdose of 18-year-old Bailey Henke in Grand Forks.
Berry and Nguyen’s co-defendant, Daniel Vivas Ceron, of Columbia, was extradited from Panama to North Dakota in 2017. Ceron later pleaded guilty for his role in operating an international fentanyl trafficking organization from a Canadian prison and is awaiting sentencing.