Officials announced that the husband of the owner of a Bronx-based daycare where a 1-year old child died from suspected exposure to fentanyl appeared before a federal court in California two days after he was captured in Mexico by authorities.
Felix Herrera Garcia was arrested on Thursday and is being charged with being the fourth person to be arrested in connection with the suspected exposure to fentanyl. Local leaders have been shocked by the incident, and there has been a public outcry against it in New York.
Court records show that a kilogram of the potent and poisonous drug was hidden on top of play mats for children. More fentanyl, however, was discovered under trapdoors in the room where kids slept and played at the daycare.
Records show that Herrera Garcia had been charged with conspiracy to distribute drugs resulting death and possession with the intent to distribute drugs resulting death.
CNN could not identify Herrera Garcia's attorney. He is expected to return to federal court to answer the charges.
In a recent statement, Drug Enforcement Administrator Anne Milgram stated that there were no boundaries when it came to protecting communities and seeking justice.
CNN previously reported that US Drug Enforcement Administration and Mexican authorities had taken the alleged midlevel drug dealer into custody after he had been spotted on a Sinaloa bus on Tuesday. Officials said that he was immediately arrested upon entering the United States. He then appeared before a US Magistrate judge in the Southern District of California.
In a press release, US Attorney Damien Williams for the Southern District of New York said that Herrera's arrest in another part of the country reflects the relentless pursuit of Herrera who fled from the daycare while the children inside were suffering as a result of his poisonous business.
Court documents reveal that Grei Mendez called Herrera Garcia twice after the four children in his daycare center started to show signs of overdosage on September 15. Records show that investigators believe Mendez called Herrera Garcia before she dialed 911. She also called Herrera Garcia's Cousin Carlisto Acevedo Brito, who was also arrested for alleged involvement in the conspiracy.
Officials said that Herrera Garcia was seen exiting the back of the daycare center with two bags of what appeared to be drugs minutes before emergency responders arrived.
Nicholas Dominici, aged one year old, died from suspected fentanyl poisoning at Divino Nino Day Care Center. Authorities said that three other children, two 2-year old boys and an eight-month-old baby girl, were hospitalized following exposure to suspected fentanyl. They suffered from acute opioid intoxication.
Authorities said that while law enforcement searched for Herrera Garcia they also expanded their investigation to arrest another associate. Renny Antonio Paredes Parra, 38, was arrested.
A law enforcement official told CNN that all were mid-level dealers who cut the fentanyl into other drugs, or household items such as baby powder. They would then use the pressing machines in the daycare center to pack the drugs and get them ready for distribution.