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Medford man arrested for dealing illegal steroids

A Medford man faces felony counts for selling 18,000 doses of illegal steroids and hundreds of doses of drugs that help with male sexual dysfunction.

(Correction: The number of charges that are felonies has been clarified in this story.)

Medford Area Drug and Gang Enforcement (MADGE) investigators are still looking into how Rafael Rene Fernandez, 39, received such large amounts of liquid anabolic steroid, Viagra and Cialis.

These drugs require a prescription to obtain, MADGE Lt. Brett Johnson said.

"We believe (Fernandez) was getting these drugs through the mail," Johnson said.

On Wednesday, MADGE investigators served a search warrant at Fernandez's house on Cedar Links Drive. They found 18,000 doses of liquid anabolic steroid, 250 doses of Viagra and 1.8 pounds of a white powder believed to be Viagra and Cialis, Johnson said.

Investigators believe Fernandez was operating an ad hoc pharmacy out of his home, Johnson said.

"He was making the capsules himself and blending the steroids with sterile water to make it into a larger quantity product," Johnson said.

The steroids and capsules were placed in homemade packaging labeled "Superior Labs," a company that Fernandez made up, perhaps in an effort to give his products an image of legitimacy.

MADGE found sales records and $15,707 in cash, which is believed to be the proceeds of drug sales, Johnson said.

"It looked to be quite a profitable business for him based on the proceeds we found at the house," Johnson said. "However, he was not a doctor or a pharmacist."

MADGE is investigating whether Fernandez had any local buyers. It is believed he was selling to people from out of the area, based on the amount of drugs found inside the home.

"We think he was packaging it and selling it to other dealers across the country," Johnson said.

This is most likely the largest steroid bust in Medford police history, Johnson said.

"We've never had an anabolic steroid case this large," he said. "We've caught people with user quantities, but never dealer quantity like this."

Johnson said the availably of these drugs through the mail is troubling.

"You can certainly find this stuff and order it from other countries," Johnson said.

Fernandez was lodged in the Jackson County Jail on charges of delivery, manufacture and possession of steroids, delivery, manufacture and possession of Viagra and deliver and manufacture of Cialis.

— Chris Conrad