A man is being held in the Orange County Detention Center under $500,000 secured bond after being charged with felony possession of over 28 grams of heroin, felony transportation of over 28 grams of heroin and felony maintenance of a vehicle for use, storage or sale of a controlled substance.
Orange County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) deputies arrested 31-year old Graham resident Albino Nieto-Ontiveros on Thursday in cooperation with the Drug Enforcement Administration.
At the time of the arrest, Nieto-Ontiveros was in possession of one kilo — or 1,000 grams — of heroin. The heroin seized was in a cellophane-wrapped brick measuring about nine inches on the longest side. OCSO made a small cut in the package to obtain a sample of the contents in order to confirm that the contents were heroin.
Deputies did not unwrap the package to avoid potential toxic exposure. The drugs will be sent to the North Carolina State Crime Laboratory in Raleigh for testing.
“The street value of the heroin is conservatively estimated to be $150,000,” Orange County Sheriff Charles Blackwood said in an OCSO press release. “Typical practice would be for the buyer of the heroin to break the block into smaller units, increase the volume by adding a cutting agent, and then package it for resale. Often the cutting agent is fentanyl, a very dangerous substance, because it is even stronger than heroin. This practice can easily lead to unintentional overdoses. Any day we remove this quantity of drugs from the community is a good day.”
Nieto-Ontiveros’ first court appearance was at 2 p.m. on Friday and he will next appear in court on July 1.
“Magistrates set bond, but it is my understanding that bonds are set at substantial amounts for drug trafficking charges because the defendant typically has both the motive to flee and the means to post bond and leave the state,” OCSO Director of Public Information and Special Services Alicia Stemper said.
Allen Cole is the lead investigator on this case. OCSO is asking anyone with additional information about the case to call him at (919)-245-2928.