A government lab tech and middle man are accused of making and selling LSD, which a confidential informant said they were selling to active-duty service members in Hawaii, according to a criminal complaint.
Trevor Keegan, an “extract tech” at the Hawaii Department of Health’s Disease Outbreak Control Division, and Austin White, an acused partner in the scheme, were charged with conspiracy to distribute controlled substances in April, the Daily Beast first reported.
“In September 2019, a United States Air Force Office of Special Investigations confidential source provided information that an individual was utilizing the social media application Snapchat to advertise and conduct drug sales, particularly with active-duty military service members,” according to an affidavit in support of the criminal complaint against Keegan.
The Air Force turned the case over to the Drug Enforcement Agency.
Keegan used his knowledge of chemistry to produce the LSD, which White then advertised on Snapchat and sold, according to the complaint filed by a DEA special agent with the U.S. District Court in Hawaii.
Between Dec. 4, 2019, and Feb. 18, investigators met with White three times to purchase a total of 48 blotter paper tabs and 35 grams of suspected LSD in a mix of tab and ingestible gummy forms.
During these meetings, investigators learned that White’s supplier “works in chemistry” and “makes his own stuff,” according to the affidavit. White referred to his supplier as “the chemist” and “the cook.”
DEA investigators called White on March 18 to set up another meeting in which they planned to purchase 300 tabs of LSD, which White told undercover agents would be an easy order for his supplier to handle, the affidavit stated.
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White sent investigators an address for the deal on March 30 and stated that his supplier would be present as well, according to the affidavit. During the transaction, White pointed out a car which he told investigators belonged to his supplier.
After receiving $2,500 from investigators, White retrieved 166 tabs of suspected LSD from the alleged supplier’s car and delivered them to the agents.
Investigators on the scene identified Keegan as the driver and owner of the car, according to the affidavit. Due to his position at the Disease Outbreak Control Division, DEA forensic chemists stated that it was possible Keegan would have knowledge of chemistry and how to operate lab equipment.
After Keegan and White were arrested on May 5, lab results showed that the blotter paper tabs tested positive for LSD but the ingestible gummies did not.
Investigations into the use of LSD by service members have increased in recent years. In the first four months of this year alone, the Naval Criminal Investigative Service reported a nearly 70 percent increase in LSD-related investigations, Military.com reported.
The Air Force Office of Special Investigations did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
Both men are currently free on a bail of $50,000, according to the Daily Beast. Hawaii News Now reported that Keegan is expected to plead guilty to federal charges of conspiracy to distribute illegal drugs. White faces the same charges, but it was not immediately clear how he will plead.
About Harm Venhuizen
Harm Venhuizen is an editorial intern at Military Times. He is studying political science and philosophy at Calvin University, where he’s also in the Army ROTC program.