R to L: James Bingham, Robert Moorehead and Richard West | HCDTF

Humboldt County Drug Task Force press release:

Since September of 2021 the Humboldt County Drug Task Force (HCDTF) has been investigating a drug trafficking organization (DTO) that was distributing “M30” fentanyl pills in Humboldt County. HCDTF received information that Robert Moorehead (24 years old from Arcata) was the leader of this DTO and was utilizing other co-conspirators to hold onto his pills and firearms in their residences to try and avoid detection. Through their investigation over several months the HCDTF was able to identify James Bingham (59 years old from Eureka) and Richard West (37 years old from Eureka) as the co- conspirators of the DTO.

On Tuesday March 22nd ,2022 the HCDTF with the assistance of the Humboldt County Sheriff’s Department and Eureka Police Department served a search warrant at three locations for this DTO.

The first location was in the 1300 block of Vernon St. in Eureka. Agents detained Bingham inside this residence. During a search of this house agents located approx. 12,000 “M30” fentanyl pills as well as 8 firearms. Some of the firearms were fully automatic and had short barrels. Three of the guns were non-registered firearms (ghost guns) and one firearm had the serial number removed.

The second location was in the 2100 block of Frederick Ave. in Arcata. Agents detained Moorehead at this location without incident. Agents located one firearm, a small amount of cocaine, and a large amount of US currency in the residence.

The third location was a travel trailer in the Redwood Acres RV Park in Eureka. Agents detained West without incident. Inside the trailer agents located a safe that contained approx. 3,000 “M30” fentanyl pills and a large amount of US currency.

All three suspects were transported to the Humboldt County Jail where they were booked for the following charges:

  • 11351 H&S Possession of controlled substance for sale
  • 11370.1 H&S Possession of controlled substance while armed
  • 182 PC Conspiracy to distribute controlled substances
  • 32000 PC Manufacturing an unsafe handgun
  • 33215 PC Possession of a short-barreled rifle
  • 32625(a) PC Possession of a machine gun
  • 30605(a) PC Possession of illegal assault rifle
  • 11366.5 H&S Maintaining a drug house

The seizure of 15,000 “M30” fentanyl pills is the largest fentanyl bust in Humboldt County history. Electronic evidence located on scene as well as statements of involved suspects confirmed that Moorehead was the leader of this DTO.

Anyone with information related to this investigation or other narcotics related crimes are encouraged to call the Humboldt County Drug Task Force at 707-267-9976.