Customs and Border Protection’s Air and Marine Operations interdicted 62 tons (124,000 pounds) of illicit drugs in the first three months of this year, CBP reports, working with international, federal, state and local partners.
“Collaboration keeps us all safer,” CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus said of their efforts. “CBP AMO works with U.S. and international partners to stem the flow of illicit narcotics. Through the end of March, AMO has contributed to the seizure of over 124,000 lbs of narcotics by partner agencies.”
Upon taking office, Biden swiftly implemented these promises, escalating the crisis. He reinstituted the Obama-era policy of releasing migrants apprehended at the border into the interior of the country, pending hearings they often skip. His Department of Homeland Security secretly transported migrants across the country in the dead of night to avoid public scrutiny. Confronted with a court order to reinstate the “Remain in Mexico” policy, Biden passively refused to comply.
In March, monthly border encounters hit a new record of 221,303, beating the previous record (also set by Biden) of 213,953 in July. Biden has funneled 1 million illegal aliens into the United States in just over a year.
Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey and 25 other governors launched the American Governors’ Border Strike Force on Tuesday to combat the expected surge in migrants and crime on the border when the Biden administration lifts the Title 42 restrictions in May. A statement from Ducey describes it as “a partnership to do what the federal government won’t: secure the southern border,” but some Arizona leaders are disappointed, believing it doesn’t go far enough.
Leading gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake expressed her skepticism of Ducey’s plan during an interview on The Clay Travis & Buck Sexton Show, saying he’s only taken “little pieces” from her border security plan. “We already have an invasion at our border … It’s going to get worse … the floodgates are open,” she said. “The question is, do we have the elected officials who are willing to do the tough work. And that means finishing that wall on the border. The materials are right there. The federal government abandoned them at the border and we need to take those materials back and finish the wall and get troops on the border.”
As cartels continue to devastate American communities with fentanyl, they’re now finding more customers for the drug in northern Mexico, Noticias Telemundo reported.
Migrants and locals just south of the border, in areas like Tijuana, Mexico, are seeing more users on the streets turning to the drug, the report detailed.
Law enforcement officers with the Arizona Department of Public Safety recovered more than 17 pounds of fentanyl pills during a traffic stop on Interstate 10 outside of Marana.
According to the officials, the 22-year-old Tucson resident attempted to conceal the pills but was charged with possession, transportation, and sale of a dangerous drug.
Amid an epidemic of overdose deaths caused largely by fentanyl, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is warning state, local and federal law enforcement of a spike in “mass-overdose events.”
“The DEA is seeing a nationwide spike in fentanyl-related mass-overdose events involving three or more overdoses occurring close in time at the same location,” a letter the DEA sent to law enforcement offices across the country Wednesday said.
Multiple U.S. states, ultimately seeing little action from the federal government on the matter, have taken it upon themselves to roll out solutions for combatting the ongoing flow of deadly fentanyl into the United States.
As reported by ABC News, two major methods have emerged from the handful of states that are directly addressing this issue: One camp seeks to reduce the risks to drug-users while also imposing steeper penalties for dealing fentanyl, while the other approach involved calling for more federal intervention, with some of these states taking it upon themselves to guard the southern border and prevent the trafficking of fentanyl into the country from Mexico.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers recently intercepted two smuggling attempts of millions of dollars worth of deadly drugs at the southern border.
Officers in Laredo, Texas, on March 25 confiscated over $4.3 million in alleged meth they found in a tractor trailer carrying waterproof sealant from Mexico, CBP said in a press release.
A joint federal and local law enforcement operation in Portland, Oregon, recently led to the largest single seizure of fentanyl in the state’s history, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).
The March 1 seizure included around 150,000 counterfeit prescription pills containing fentanyl and 20 pounds of suspected bulk fentanyl, the DOJ said in a press release. The contraband reportedly had an estimated street value of around $4 million.
The drugs were confiscated as a result of the arrest of four drug traffickers, the DOJ said. The ringleader of the group, Ufrano Orozco Munoz, 27, was allegedly involved in a conspiracy to traffic fentanyl from Mexico and other areas for distribution and sale in Oregon.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers in El Paso, Texas, in the last two weeks have intercepted multiple American women carrying fentanyl concealed in their private areas.
“It is tragic that people are willing to put themselves in these dangerous situations,” CBP El Paso Director of Field Operations Hector A. Mancha said in a statement. “This synthetic opioid is so powerful that if a package were to rupture inside the body, the consequences could be life threatening.”
On Feb. 24 a 31-year-old woman, who is a U.S. citizen, was carrying .394 pounds of fentanyl that she removed from her inside private parts after a pat down, where CBP officers at the Port of Ysleta felt something foreign in her private area during a secondary search, according to CBP.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the Port of Lukeville arrested an Arizona man for attempting to smuggle approximately 1,000 pounds of methamphetamine and fentanyl across the Arizona-Mexico border.
According to a statement from U.S. Customs and Border Protection, the Phoenix man loaded 880 pounds of meth and 110 pounds of fentanyl in his Roadmaster RV; however, the drugs were detected by a narcotics canine.
Congressman David Schweikert, R-Arizona, was one of 116 Republicans in Congress to sign a letter uring President Joe Biden’s administration to address the country’s fentanyl problem.
The letter, sent to the administration on Feb. 10, urges the Biden administration to take action against the drug often made in China and enters the United States via the southern border. The letter urges the Biden administration to permanently classify fentanyl and related substances as Schedule 1 narcotics.
“Fentanyl is crossing our southern border at record levels, and with it has come tragedy for communities across the country,” Schweikert said in a press release. “In Arizona, this crisis has hit particularly hard, and the impact on our state has been devastating. To combat the fentanyl epidemic, we must give our law enforcement officers all the resources they need to take action and fight this harmful drug, and that starts by making fentanyl-related substances a permanent Schedule 1 classification.”
Record amounts of fentanyl and other drugs are being seized in Kansas after they’ve made their way north from Mexico and the state’s attorney general, Derek Schmidt, said he is trying to stop it. He joined a coalition of other Republican attorneys general at the Texas-Mexico border to see first-hand how the Biden administration’s open border policies are contributing to crime in Kansas.
In one briefing with the Texas Department of Public Safety, the AGs learned that Texas state troopers alone had seized enough fentanyl last year to kill over 200 million people. They also arrested more than 10,000 illegal immigrants for committing state crimes, including for child trafficking and drug smuggling, seized over five tons of methamphetamine, and over $17 million in cash as part of Operation Lone Star, Texas’ border security initiative.
While it’s “good news that they’re seizing more, there’s no reason to think that there’s less of it eluding seizure at the border because the border’s wide open in large swaths,” Schmidt told The Center Square. “I don’t think it’s a good news number. I think it’s an indication of the increased volume coming across the border, not an indication of increased success in stopping it at the border.”
Sixteen Republican state attorneys general are calling on Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken to take action against China and Mexico for their role in creating a fentanyl crisis in the U.S.
“China’s complete unwillingness to police the production and distribution of fentanyl precursors and Mexico’s subsequent failure to control illegal manufacturing of fentanyl using those precursors,” the attorneys general argue, poses a daily threat to Americans.
West Virginia and Arizona are leading the effort. Joining them are the attorneys general of Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, South Carolina, South Dakota and Texas. They say they’ve witnessed an “extraordinary tide of senseless death from fentanyl” in their states.
The lethal synthetic drug fentanyl has been increasingly trafficked into the U.S., and, in fiscal year 2021, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reported a 134% increase in seizures of the illicit drug.
Fentanyl is 80 to 100 times stronger than morphine, and a lethal dose is about 2 milligrams, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), which has recently warned about the increase in fentanyl-laced pills cartels in Mexico are manufacturing with chemicals provided by China.
The drug is fueling an overdose epidemic in the U.S., and is the leading killer 18-45 year olds nationwide.
Authorities in Arizona seized $9 million worth of fentanyl pills in the state’s largest bust of the illicit drug – enough, they said, to kill half the population of Arizona.
The bust comes after a nonprofit group cites fentanyl as the leading cause of death among Americans between the age of 18 and 45. Arizona and Texas attorneys general and governors vowed to fight what they called the “lawlessness of the Biden administration,” which they argue is enabling fentanyl to be brought into the U.S. through its open border policies.
The government has reported that, since the year 2020, fentanyl overdoses have become the new leading cause of death for American adults between the ages of 18 and 45, as reported by Fox News.
The analysis from the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) shows that nearly 79,000 Americans died from the drug between 2020 and 2021. Of those, just over 37,000 died in 2020 while almost 42,000 died in 2021. Fentanyl is an opioid that is sometimes laced with other drugs such as meth and heroin when used by addicts, but can also be deadly on its own in even small doses. The primary foreign sources for imports of the drug are China and Mexico.
U.S. drug agents are expanding operations in China – six years after America’s largest trading partner and global rival emerged as the main source of chemicals used to make highly lethal fentanyl. It’s now claiming 65,000 American lives a year.
The small crew of about a dozen Drug Enforcement Administration agents, including those in new outposts in Shanghai and Guangzhou, is nearly double the number in 2018. They face what seems like mission impossible: collaborating with Chinese agents to try to bust traffickers hidden somewhere in a sprawling export supply chain that’s linked to 160,000 companies.
“It’s such a massive chemical industry, and then there are layer upon layer of traders, brokers and freight forwarders,” says Russ Holske, the DEA’s director for the Far East, who set up the new offices in China before he retired. “It’s a daunting challenge.”
Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich joined “Fox News Live” Sunday to discuss the impact of the border crisis, which has drastically worsened since President Joe Biden took office.
“We start talking about these numbers and we forget that there is human cost,” Brnovich said. “We know now that in places like Pima County, the second-largest county in Arizona that fentanyl and opioid deaths are the number one cause of people under 19 dying. More so than car accidents, and other causes.”
Border Patrol agents in the Yuma Sector on Wednesday apprehended drugs and $10,000 in cash from a suspect who attempted to escape law enforcement.
Giang Van Thi Slaughter, who is a Lawfully Admitted Permanent Resident (LAPR), refused to pull over when agents initiated a traffic stop.
New data released from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show Arizonans turned to fatal doses of painkillers and other drugs amid the COVID-19 pandemic at a much higher rate than in other years.
Overdose deaths in Arizona increased 33% to 2,743 from February 2020 to April 2021. Overdoses across the country increased 34% over the same time period. The change is a sharp uptick from years prior. From January 2015 to January 2020, the overdose death rate increased by 18%.
According to CDC data, synthetic opioids such as Fentanyl accounted for nearly two-thirds of overdose deaths. Fentanyl is multiple times more potent than typical painkillers such as Oxycontin. The powerful opioid has become a popular drug to manufacture for the black market to smuggle across the southern border into California and Arizona, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency.
In just two traffic stops, Arizona law enforcement officials seized dozens of pounds of heroin and thousands of fentanyl pills.
On Interstate 10, troopers with the Arizona Department of Public Safety conducted a traffic stop on a truck, finding 35 pounds of packaged heroin concealed within the pickup.
Troopers with the Arizona Department of Public Safety on Thursday seized over $1.7 million in illegal drugs while performing a traffic stop Thursday.
The stop, performed on Interstate 10 near Marana outside of Tuscon, produced 34 pounds of fentanyl pills hidden in the vehicle. Additionally, law enforcement officers obtained a warrant to search a separate vehicle.
In the second vehicle, authorities discovered over 37 additional pounds of fentanyl pills, 8 pounds of methamphetamine, 7 pounds of heroin, and 4.95 pounds of an unknown substance.
On a September afternoon, Allyssia Solorio wondered why her energetic young brother hadn’t emerged from his bedroom in their Sacramento, Calif., home. When she opened his door, she saw 23-year-old Mikael leaning back on his bed with his legs dangling over the side. She rushed to her brother and shook him, but to no avail. He was dead. A counterfeit pharmaceutical pill laced with illicit fentanyl had killed him.
Mikael Tirado was one of an estimated 93,331 overdose fatalities in the United States last year – an all-time high. Nearly five times the murder rate, the deadly overdose toll was primarily caused by fentanyl, a highly lethal synthetic opioid. It’s manufactured mostly by Mexican cartels with ingredients imported from China, and then smuggled over the southwestern U.S. border. Fentanyl has been arriving in larger quantities each year since at least 2016.
In one year, Customs and Border Protection agents encountered triple the number of people entering the U.S. illegally compared to the previous year. From October 2020 to September 2021, 1,734,686 people were encountered at the U.S. southern border.
From October 2019 to September 2020, that number was 458,088.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) from the Tucson Sector Wednesday announced that it had seized a massive quantity of the extremely lethal drug fentanyl.
“U.S. Border Patrol agents working the Interstate 19 Immigration Checkpoint near Amado, Arizona, seized over 50 pounds of suspected fentanyl and arrested the driver of the vehicle Monday morning,” a CBP press release said.
Snapchat is putting in place new safety measures to try and stop young users buying and selling fentanyl on its platform, the company announced Thursday.
The company unveiled an in-app education portal called “Heads Up” in a blog post Thursday designed to provide young users with information from substance abuse advocacy groups including Song for Charlie, Shatterproof, and the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration on the dangers of fentanyl. Snapchat also said it is planning on adding health information from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention in the coming weeks.
U.S. authorities criticized social media for an uptick in drug trafficking following a massive seizure of over a million fentanyl-laced pills and hundreds of drug dealer arrests.
The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) announced Monday that it, alongside various law enforcement partners, seized over 1.8 million fake pills laced with fentanyl and arrested over 800 alleged drug dealers over the course of a two-month drug bust beginning in August. Authorities have criticized social media companies that have failed to stop the sale of these illicit drugs on their platforms.
Federal authorities have seized significantly more fentanyl along the U.S.-Mexican border in Arizona and California since October than they did in the entire 2020 fiscal year.
Since October, authorities have seized 7.000 pounds of the drug, compared to just 4,500 pounds in the entire last fiscal year, according to data from Customs and Boarder Protection. The reasoning, according to authorities, is simply supply and demand.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) seized 6,494 pounds of fentanyl in the first four months of 2021. This is much higher than the 4,776 pounds seized in all of 2020. While it is impressive that CBP has removed this much of the deadly drug from the market, the majority of the fentanyl brought into the U.S. is not seized, and increasing amounts of fentanyl are reaching Americans. The drug, a synthetic opioid, was invented in 1960 for medical applications and is 50 to 100 times stronger than morphine. In recent years, Mexico-based criminal organizations have been manufacturing the highly addictive drug, often mixed with other substances, and distributing it throughout the United States.
Border officials seized nearly 2,400 more pounds of fentanyl from January to April 2021 than during the same period in 2020, according to Customs and Border Protection.
Officials seized nearly 3,290 pounds of fentanyl in the first four months of 2021 compared to around 920 pounds in the same timeframe of 2020, according to Customs and Border Protection (CBP). Border officials seized a total of 7,300 pounds of fentanyl from January to December 2020.