North Attleboro man admits to leading steroid distribution conspiracy


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Date: March 23, 2021


PROVIDENCE — A North Attleboro, MA, man arrested twice for leading a conspiracy to import and distribute large quantities of steroids faces up to 40 years in federal prison and will, according to a plea agreement filed with the court, forfeit more than $640,000 derived from his criminal activity, after pleading guilty today in federal court in Providence to conspiracy and money laundering charges.

David M. Esser, first arrested in February 2020, and rearrested in December 2020, admitted that he arranged for the importation of large quantities of raw steroids from international suppliers, primarily based in Hong Kong. The raw steroids were shipped directly to various locations in the United States where individuals, working at Esser's direction and paid by Esser, "cooked" the raw steroid product into liquid form, packaged the product in vials, and shipped the vials to a stash house in North Attleboro. From there, Esser and others shipped the product to customers throughout the United States.

Esser, who was released on $50,000 unsecured bond while awaiting trial following his arrest on February 14, 2020, was re-arrested on December 14, 2020, on charges he arranged with a Virginia resident he conspired with in the past to resume the sale, packaging, and distribution of anabolic steroids.

Esser was ordered detained in federal custody following his second arrest.

Appearing today before U.S. District Court Chief Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., Esser pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute anabolic steroids, conspiracy to distribute anabolic steroids while on release, and money laundering, announced Acting United States Attorney Richard B. Myrus and Homeland Security Investigations Acting Special Agent in Charge William S. Walker.

According to a plea agreement filed with the court, Esser will forfeit proceeds from his criminal activity to include a total of $160,359.85 in cash and bank accounts seized at the time of his arrests; cryptocurrency equal to $268,692.74; $214,000 – the value of thirteen properties purchased by Esser in Pennsylvania, purchased using proceeds from his criminal activity; four vehicles; and jewelry.

Esser, who remains detained in federal custody, is scheduled to be sentenced on June 7, 2021.

At sentencing, Esser faces statutory penalties of up to 40 years imprisonment; two years to lifetime supervised release; and a fine of $1.5 million dollars.

The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gerard B. Sullivan.

Acting United States Attorney Myrus acknowledges and thanks the Internal Revenue Service-Criminal Investigation, United States Postal Inspection Service, Alamance County North Carolina Narcotics Enforcement Team, U.S. Food and Drug Administration, HSI Special Agents in the Houston and Winston-Salem Field Offices, and officers and detectives from the North Attleboro and Mansfield Police Departments for their assistance in the investigation of this matter and arrest of defendants involved in this matter.