A federal judge sentenced a 26-year-old Lake Charles man to two years in prison for his involvement in a steroid distribution ring. U.S. District Judge Patricia Minaldi also ordered Jordan Blake Berza to pay a $12,000 fine.
The fine is in addition to a $15,000 payment Berza will make to the government in lieu of the seizure of property, according to a news release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
Berza was the leader of a drug-trafficking organization that was responsible for receiving several hundred 10 milliliter vials of anabolic steroids, numerous packages of anabolic steroid cream and about 35 kilograms of raw steroid powder, which was shipped from China and Germany, the release said.
The steroid powder was then converted into an injectable form, bottled, labeled for distribution and sold to people within the Western, Middle and Eastern Districts of Louisiana and Texas, the release said.
About 7,000 10-milliliter vials were manufactured and distributed by the group, and more than 600 vials were seized through undercover purchases, traffic stops and search warrants, the release said.
About $93,000 was seized from members of the organization, the majority of which came from bank seizures on accounts belonging to Berza and Christopher Gass, who was sentenced to 18 months in prison, according to the release.
The two defendants were co-owners of Planet Nutrition in Lake Charles, the release said.
The business was utilized as a distribution point for the anabolic steroids. Berza also delivered and mailed steroids to many of his distributors, the release said.
Nine other defendants in the case were sentenced earlier this month.
The remaining defendant, Ronald Lee Bert Fontenot, 23, of Eunice, is scheduled for sentencing Dec. 1.