DEA Phoenix Seizes over 8 Million Fentanyl Pills During Operation

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration announced Wednesday that an enforcement operation spanning from May to September seized millions of illicit fentanyl pills.

“On the frontline as we race to save lives, DEA Arizona continues to seize historic amounts of deadly fentanyl,” said Cheri Oz, the Phoenix DEA Special Agent in Charge of the operation. “It is terrifying that the drug cartels are mimicking candy to make fentanyl appear harmless. We need your help spreading the word about the dangers of fentanyl. It’s a matter of life and death.”

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Commentary: The Opioids Crisis’ Impact on America’s Economy

Strung out on drugs half her life, Brandi Edwards, 29, said the longest she held a job before getting sober four years ago was “about two and a half months.”

“I worked at an AT&T call center, a day-care center for a month, fast food places, but I had to take drugs to get out of bed in the morning and when I did show up, I wasn’t productive,” the West Virginia mother of three told RealClearInvestigations. “The first paycheck came along and I was out of there.”

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Nation’s Second-Largest School District Stocks Overdose Reversal Drugs After Student Deaths

The second-largest school district in the country is stocking its schools with naloxone, an opioid overdose reversal drug, following student deaths, according to a Thursday news release.

In the recent weeks, nine students have died from overdoses in the Los Angeles Unified School District, with one student overdosing in the bathroom after obtaining a pill containing fentanyl from a peer, according to the Los Angeles Times. Every school in the district, beginning with elementary schools, will be stocked with the nasal spray version of naloxone, or Narcan, according to news release by the school.

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Phoenix Police Make Largest Single Seizure of Fentanyl Pills in Department History

The Phoenix Police Department (PHXPD) shared Friday that officials made the largest single seizure of fentanyl pills in the department’s history this week.

“Phoenix police detectives with the Drug Enforcement Bureau have made the single largest fentanyl bust in Phoenix police history. Two men have been arrested in connection to the seizure which netted more than one million fentanyl pills,” according to a media advisory shared with the Arizona Sun Times.

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Arizona Police Seize 52 Pounds of Fentanyl from Smuggler

Arizona Department of Public Safety (AZDPS) troopers on September 14 seized more than 50pounds of fentanyl during a traffic stop in Pima County, according to a release from this week. 

“During the traffic stop, the trooper observed multiple indicators of criminal activity,” the release said. “A subsequent search of the vehicle led to the discovery of 52 pounds of suspected fentanyl pills concealed within a compartment built into the vehicle’s rocker panels. The suspected fentanyl was being smuggled from Nogales, Mexico, to Tucson.”

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Arizona Officials React to August Southern Border Encounter Statistics

New southern border encounter statistics from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) revealed that officials encountered over 200,000 migrants at the border for the sixth month in a row, which Gov. Doug Ducey said is especially harsh on Arizona border towns.

“Border towns bear the weight of this record illegal immigration. Government services, hospitals and food banks are strapped. The Yuma sector had more than 24,000 migrant encounters in August – almost a quarter of the town’s population,” tweeted Ducey.

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Maricopa County Indicts Two Women Transporting over 850,000 Fentanyl Pills

The Maricopa County Grand Jury indicted two women Monday for possessing over 850,000 counterfeit pills laced with fentanyl, enough to cause potentially millions of overdoses.

“Two out of five counterfeit pills that come across our border are laced with lethal doses of fentanyl. These drugs are being marketed to our youth in the most proliferous ways and are being produced in candy-like colors. We must hold those who bring these lethal pills into our community accountable,” said County Attorney Rachel Mitchell.

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Florida and Connecticut Attorneys General Lead Bipartisan Effort to Classify Illicit Fentanyl as Weapon of Mass Destruction

fentanyl pills on the hood of a vehicle

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody and Connecticut Attorney General William Tong are leading a multistate, bipartisan effort urging President Joe Biden to classify illicit fentanyl as a weapon of mass destruction (WMD).

“I first called for President Biden to take swift action in July and call fentanyl what it is – a weapon of mass destruction,” Moody said. “Now, I am leading a bipartisan coalition of 18 attorneys general demanding the president take action now, declare fentanyl a WMD and join us in our fight to prevent the death and destruction caused by this highly-lethal substance from getting even worse.”

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Border Patrol Agents Seize Record Amounts of Deadly Fentanyl, Meth in Arizona, Texas

U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents are seizing record amounts of fentanyl and meth in Arizona and Texas brought in by Mexican cartel operatives and foreign nationals trying to enter the U.S. illegally.

In just five separate inspections ahead of Labor Day weekend, for example, officers seized 625,000 pills in Nogales, Arizona, which borders Sonora, Mexico, Michael Humphries, CBP Director of the Nogales Port of Entry, said.

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Blake Masters: Mark Kelly Should Be Forced to Attend the Funerals of Teenagers Overdosing on Fentanyl

Arizona Republican Senate nominee Blake Masters recently blasted his incumbent opponent Mark Kelly (D-AZ) for supporting the Biden Administration’s open border policies that have led to a flood of fentanyl entering the country.

“There are no words to describe tens of thousands of dead American teenagers, dead from fentanyl because of the wide-open southern border,” Masters said. “Mark Kelly should be forced to attend the funerals of each of those dead children, so he can better understand the consequences of his support for Joe Biden’s open borders. I truly mean that.”

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Arizona Troopers Making Traffic Stop Seize Enough Fentanyl to Kill Seven Million People

An Arizona state trooper made a massive drug bust when he pulled over a motorist in late August. 

“During the traffic stop, the trooper observed multiple indicators of criminal activity,” said a Friday press release from the Arizona Department of Public Safety (AZDPS). “A subsequent search of the vehicle led to the discovery of approximately 46 pounds of suspected fentanyl pills concealed in natural compartments within the vehicle.”

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Arizona Fills In over 3,000 Feet of the Yuma Border Wall Section

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey (R) announced Wednesday that over 3,000 feet of previously open sections in Yuma’s border wall had been filled, celebrating that Arizona is doing what the federal government will not.

“Five wide open gaps in the border wall near Yuma neighborhoods and businesses are now closed off. In just 11 days, Arizona did the job the federal government has failed to do — and we showed them just how quickly and efficiently the border can be made more secure – if you want to,” said Ducey.

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Arizona Leaders Respond to CBP’s July Southern Border Encounter Statistics

The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) recently shared the total number of encounters at the southern border in July, and several of Arizona’s leaders have spoken on the new numbers, including Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar (r-AZ-04).

“For the seventeenth straight month, more than 150,000 illegal aliens crossed the southern border including [nearly] 200,000 illegal aliens in July 2022. Since Biden and the open border democrats took over in January 2021, they have facilitated an invasion of our sovereign borders of more than 4.2 million illegal aliens. Included in this invasion are terrorists – over five dozen documented so far, drug traffickers, sex traffickers and common criminals,” Gosar said.

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Four Alleged Cartel Members Charged with Sending Money to China for Fentanyl Production

Fentanyl

Four alleged cartel members were charged in connection with an international money laundering operation that involved sending funds to China to produce fentanyl.

The four New Jersey men, William Panzera, 49, Thomas Padovano, 48, Bartholomew Padovano, 71, and Sean Tighe, 46, were indicted by a federal grand jury in the District of New Jersey Wednesday, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ).

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Gov. Doug Ducey Issues Executive Order to Fill Gaps in Southern Border Wall

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R) issued an executive order Friday to fill a 1,000-foot gap in the Yuma sector of the southern border wall.

“Arizona has had enough,” Ducey said. “We can’t wait any longer. The Biden administration’s lack of urgency on border security is a dereliction of duty. For the last two years, Arizona has made every attempt to work with Washington to address the crisis on our border. Time and time again we’ve stepped in to clean up their mess. Arizonans can’t wait any longer for the federal government to deliver on their delayed promises.”

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Paul Gosar Introduces Legislation Aiming to Punish Fentanyl Distributors with Death Penalty

Arizona Rep. Paul Gosar (R-AZ-04) recently introduced House Rule (HR) 8228, which aims to punish those who distribute fentanyl, resulting in death, with the death penalty or life in prison.

“One of the many deeply troubling consequences of Joe Biden’s open border policies is the deadly flow of fentanyl across the southern border. Since Biden assumed office in January 2021, more than 1,000,000 pounds of illegal drugs have been seized, including 7,700 pounds of fentanyl in just the first five months of 2022. The overwhelming majority of fentanyl is smuggled across the border from Mexico,” Gosar said in a press release.

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Mark Brnovich Announces Two Multistate Settlements with Four Pharmaceutical Companies for Their Roles in the Opioid Crisis

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich (R) recently announced two historic multistate settlements, totaling $26 billion, with four pharmaceutical companies over their roles in the opioid crisis.

“We are working to get these opioid abatement funds to local communities as quickly as possible,” Brnovich said in a press release. “They will help facilitate more effective treatment, education, and prevention as our state continues to tackle this heartbreaking crisis.”

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22 Arizonans Indicted for Drug-Related Charges After Criminal Gang Investigation

The Arizona US Attorney’s Office (USAO) recently revealed that 22 Arizonians have been indicted for drug-related charges following a multi-year investigation of a South Phoenix criminal street gang.

“According to the criminal complaints filed last week, in January 2020, the Arizona Department of Public Safety (“DPS”) began an investigation targeting a drug and firearms supplier in South Phoenix. In February 2021, in conjunction with the DPS investigation, the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (“FBI”) Violent Street Gang Task Force began investigating the Lindo Park Crips (“LPC”), a criminal street gang operating in South Phoenix,” according to a press release from the USAO.

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Border Agents Stop Driver Attempting to Smuggle More than Enough Fentanyl to Kill the Entire Population of San Diego

Border Patrol agents in California on Monday seized enough fentanyl to kill over 2 million people. The population of San Diego is an estimated 1.4 million.

Agents in the El Centro border sector searched the vehicle at a highway checkpoint, where they found six black packages wrapped in cellophane hidden inside the car’s dashboard and air vents, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said Wednesday. The male driver, 53, and the female passenger, 27, in the car were both from Mexico and didn’t have the proper documents to be in the U.S.

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CBP Officers Seize Enough Fentanyl to Kill over 12 Million People

Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers at the California-Mexico border recently made a single seizure of fentanyl with the potential to kill over 12 million people.

CBP officers stationed at the Calexico West Port of Entry searched a vehicle on June 6 coming in from Mexico, finding 43 packages of blue pills containing fentanyl hidden in the car’s gas tank, according to a Tuesday press release.

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Drug-Plagued State Sees Record Overdoses Thanks to Fentanyl Epidemic

Kentucky has seen a record year of overdose deaths as it continues to deal with fentanyl being trafficked into the state, multiple outlets reported based on state data released Monday.

Kentucky saw 2,250 overdose deaths in 2021, a 14.5% increase from 2020, according to the Kentucky Office of Drug Control Policy’s report. The state ranked third in the country for the number of overdose deaths due to the high number that occurred in Kentucky during the pandemic, according to WLKY.

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Border Authorities Seize Enough Fentanyl to Kill Millions

Border authorities in Texas seized 22 pounds of fentanyl worth $339,300 that a smuggler was attempting to drive into the U.S. on Wednesday, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) says that 2 milligrams of fentanyl can be enough to kill a person, 22 pounds is 9,979,032 milligrams. Applying the DEA’s own metrics, this means the latest seizure is enough to kill 4,989,516 people.

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Attorney General Mark Brnovich Indicts Man Arrested for Illicit Drug Trafficking

Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich (R) announced the indictment of a man recently arrested on drug trafficking-related charges.

“On May 11, 2022, law enforcement arrested [Jose Luis] Montoya Miranda on suspicion of trafficking illicit drugs. Law enforcement located approximately 140,000 fentanyl pills, over 11 pounds of fentanyl powder, 2.11 pounds of heroin, 2.9 pounds of methamphetamine, and a handgun. The charges are based on an investigation conducted by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA),” according to a statement by the attorney general’s office.

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Arizona Police Seize 500,000 Fentanyl Pills from Two Phoenix Women

Monday, Casa Grande police seized approximately 500,000 Fentanyl pills from two Arizona women after a traffic stop.
Lopez, 31, and Solis, 30, were arrested and booked for charges involving narcotic drugs, weapon dismantlement, and child endangerment. Authorities placed the two juveniles in the custody of the Department of Child Safety.

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CBP’s Air and Marine Operations Interdicted 62 Tons of Drugs in First Three Months of Year

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.”

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Commentary: Will the Great Betrayal of American Democracy Go Unchallenged This November?

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.

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Arizona Leaders Disappointed at Ducey’s Plan with 25 Governors to Secure the Border

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.” 

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Cartels Selling Fentanyl to Migrants, Locals in Northern Mexico

Fentanyl

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.

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Law Enforcement Seizes More Than 17 Pounds of Fentanyl Pills During Traffic Stop Near Tucson

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.

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DEA Warns Law Enforcement to Prepare for a Surge in ‘Mass-Overdose Events’ from Fentanyl

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.

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Ohio, Arizona, and West Virginia Among the States Seeking Solutions to Fentanyl Crisis

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.

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Border Patrol Officials Make Massive Fentanyl, Meth, and Heroin Seizures at the Southern Border

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.

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Authorities Confiscate 150,000 Fentanyl Pills in Largest Seizure in Oregon’s History

fentanyl pills on the hood of a vehicle

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.

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‘Tragic’: Border Officers Catch Several Female American Citizens Storing Nearly a Pound of Fentanyl in Their Bodies

Close up of white pills

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.

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Arizona Man Arrested for Attempting to Smuggle a Half Ton of Meth, Fentanyl into U.S.

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.

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Arizona U.S. Rep Schweikert Signs Letter Urging Biden Administration to Take Action on Fentanyl Crisis

David Schweikert

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.”

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Attorney General Schmidt: Kansas Sees Large Spikes in Fentanyl Seizures, Drug Overdoses

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.”

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16 Republican AGs Seek Federal Pressure on China, Mexico over Fentanyl Crisis

Antony Blinken

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.

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Border Patrol Saw 134 Percent Increase in Fentanyl Seizures in Fiscal Year 2021

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.

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Arizona Seizes Record Amount of Fentanyl, Now Cited as Leading Cause of Death of Young Americans

Fentanyl

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.

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Fentanyl Overdoses Leading Cause of Deaths in America in 2020

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.

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Commentary: U.S. Drug Agents Ramp Up Fentanyl Counterattack on Chinese Mainland — as DEA Faces Its Own Troubles at Home

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.”

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Arizona Attorney General Describes Cost of Biden Border Crisis

Mark Brnovich

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.”

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Border Patrol Agents Apprehend Fentanyl, Other Drugs from Suspect Who Attempted to Escape Law Enforcement

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.

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Arizona Overdose Deaths Skyrocket in 2020

Spilled pill bottle on table top with a spoon underneath

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.

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Arizona Law Enforcement Officers Seize Deadly Amounts of Fentanyl, Heroin

3,000 fentanyl pills extracted from a car by Arizona Department of Public Safety

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.

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Arizona State Troopers Find $2 Million in Fentanyl, Meth During Traffic Stop Outside Tucson

Heston Silbert

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.

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Commentary: The Migrant Surge at the Southern Border Fuels Massive American Fentanyl Overdoses

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.

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In One Year, Encounters Triple with Migrants Attempting to Cross Southern Border Illegally

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.

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Arizona Border Patrol Seizes 50 Pounds of Fentanyl

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. 

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