by Photo courtesy of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration

The Drug Enforcement Administration announced it seized over 379 million deadly doses of Fentanyl this year, which is enough deadly doses to kill the entire population of North America. 

As 2022 comes to an end, the Drug Enforcement Administration is announcing the seizure of over 50.6 million fentanyl-laced, fake prescription pills and more than 10,000 pounds of fentanyl powder this calendar year. 

“In the past year, the men and women of the DEA have relentlessly worked to seize over 379 million deadly doses of fentanyl from communities across the country,” said Administrator Anne Milgram. “These seizures – enough deadly doses of fentanyl to kill every American – reflect DEA’s unwavering commitment to protect Americans and save lives, by tenaciously pursuing those responsible for the trafficking of fentanyl across the United States.”

Fentanyl is the deadliest drug threat facing this country. It is a highly addictive man-made opioid that is 50 times more potent than heroin. Just two milligrams of fentanyl, the small amount that fits on the tip of a pencil, is considered a potentially deadly dose.

Milgram said the DEA’s top operational priority is to defeat the Sinaloa and Jalisco (CJNG) Cartels “that are primarily responsible for the fentanyl that is killing Americans today.”

According to the DEA, most of the fentanyl trafficked by the Sinaloa and CJNG Cartels is being mass-produced at secret factories in Mexico with chemicals sourced largely from China. 

Fentanyl seized in 2022 more than doubled the amount of fentanyl-laced, fake prescription pills that it seized in 2021.DEA also seized nearly 131,000 pounds of methamphetamine, more than 4,300 pounds of heroin, and over 444,000 pounds of cocaine.

“The opioid crisis has touched every part of California, and our nation, this year. As we mourn the many lives lost, California is working harder than ever to fight this crisis and protect people from these dangerous drugs to ensure our communities are kept safe in the first place,” Governor Gavin Newsom said in a press release, noting the state’s National Guard seized more than 28,000 of fentanyl this year. 

A Public Safety Alert was issued in 2021 on the widespread drug trafficking of fentanyl in the form of fentanyl-laced, fake prescription pills. These pills are made to look identical to real prescription medications—including OxyContin®, Percocet®, and Xanax—but only contain filler and fentanyl and are often deadly

Just last month, DEA alerted the public to a sharp nationwide increase in the lethality of fentanyl-laced fake prescription pills. DEA laboratory testing in 2022 revealed that six out of ten fentanyl-laced, fake prescription pills contained a potentially lethal dose of fentanyl. 

This is an increase from the DEA’s announcement in 2021 that four out of ten fentanyl-laced, fake prescription pills contain a potentially deadly dose.

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