Fentanyl

COUNTY OFFICIALS WARN OF RISE IN FENTANYL FATALITIES, USE OF COUNTERFEIT DRUGS AMID PANDEMIC

By Miriam Raftery

August 12, 2020 (San Diego) – District Attorney Summer Stephan is warning of an “alarming uptick” in overdose deaths caused by fentanyl.  Stephan says dealers are lacing various illegal drugs with fentanyl in what she calls “a recipe for death.”

At least 119 deaths so far this year are confirmed to be related to fentanyl in San Diego County, with another 84 deaths in which the drug is suspected to be a factor.  Isolation during the pandemic is believed to be a key factor contributing to the increase in addiction and fatalities.

According to a joint statement issued by state and federal prosecutors, law enforcement and county health officials, the number of deaths in 2020 is expected to exceed last year’s total of 152. 


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FENTANYL DEALER SENTENCED TO 12 YEARS IN PRISON FOR DEATH OF RAMONA WOMAN

By Miriam Raftery
 
Photo: 2 milligrams of fentanyl, a lethal dose for most people (via the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency)
 
August 6, 2020 (Ramona) – Over 31,000 Americans died in 2018 of overdoses of synthetic opioids including fentanyl, which is 50 to 100 times more potent than heroin o morphine, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control reports. The victims include a 33-year-old Ramona woman who died July 9, 2018 after buying illegal fentanyl from Michael Steen, 27. 
 
Yesterday in federal court, Judge Gonzalo Curiel sentenced Steen to 12 years in prison after he pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute over 500 grams of Fentanyl—including the deadly dose that killed the Ramona woman.
 

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DEA RELEASES 2019 NATIONAL DRUG THREAT ASSESSMENT: METH AND “DEADLY” FENTANYL MOST SERIOUS LOCAL PROBLEMS

Annual report outlines strategic review of threats posed by drugs and drug traffickers

Source: Drug Enforcement Agency

February 3, 2020 (San Diego) -- Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) Acting Administrator Uttam Dhillon has announced publication of the 2019 National Drug Threat Assessment, which outlines threats posed to the United States by domestic and international drug trafficking and by abuse of illicit drugs.

“This year’s report illustrates a shifting drug landscape in the United States,” said Acting Administrator Dhillon. “We’re pleased that in 2018, drug overdose deaths declined over four percent overall, with even greater decreases – over 13 percent – in overdoses from controlled prescription opioids. Many challenges remain, however, including the spread of fentanyl and methamphetamine across the country. DEA and its partners will continue to work diligently to combat the drug trafficking organizations that bring these deadly substances into our country and endanger the American people.”

“Unlike other cities, San Diego faces unique challenges by being on the U.S.-Mexico border,” said San Diego Special Agent in Charge John W. Callery. “In 2018, the DEA San Diego seized record amounts of methamphetamine and deadly fentanyl. While our battle with the Mexican drug cartels persists, our agents are more committed than ever to stemming the flow of these deadly drugs entering our community and effecting the lives of our friends and families.”


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FEDS ANNOUNCE MASSIVE TAKEDOWN OF EAST COUNTY DRUG TRAFFICKING NETWORKS TIED TO SINALOA CARTEL

85 defendants charged for distributing methamphetamine, heroin and fentanyl

East County News Service

September 19, 2019 (San Diego’s East County) -- Eight indictments were unsealed today in San Diego federal court, charging 85 members of drug distribution networks linked to the Sinaloa Cartel with federal drug trafficking, money laundering and firearms offenses. Authorities are searching for 38 defendants; the rest are in state or federal custody, the U.S. Department of Justice in San Diego announced.


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COCAINE LACED WITH FENTANYL LEADS TO DEATHS, OVERDOSES

 

 

By County News Center, County of San Diego Communications Office

Image credit: PhotoSpin

September 17, 2018 (San Diego) - Local law enforcement and health officials are warning the public about a spate of deaths in beach communities connected to cocaine laced with the highly-potent and often deadly drug fentanyl.


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CBP OFFICERS STOP TEENAGERS ALLEGEDLY SMUGGLING FENTANYL AND COCAINE

 

Source:  U.S. Customs and Border Patrol

April 2, 2018 (San Diego) - U.S. Customs and Border Protection officers at the San Ysidro port of entry thwarted two alleged narcotic smuggling attempts after discovering one teen carrying packages of fentanyl strapped to his body and a young woman concealing fentanyl and cocaine in her vehicle.


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FATAL ELEPHANT TRANQUILIZER FOUND IN COUNTERFEIT PAINKILLER PILLS

 

 

By Miriam Raftery

October 11, 2017 (San Diego) – Carfentanil, an elephant tranquilizer drug 5,000 times stronger than heroin, is turning up in street drugs marketed as opoid  narcotic painkillers such as Oxycodone, as well as in tainted heroin.  

The drug is so deadly that just a couple of granules the size of salt crystals will cause death, even with medical intervention, authorities warn. It’s turning up in street drugs locally and nationally, including drugs sold by dealers and on the Internet’s dark web—and deaths are skyrocketing as a result.


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DEA BUSTS MAJOR FENTANYL TRAFFICKING RING IN LEMON GROVE

 

East County News Service

File photo: U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency

June 20, 2017 (Lemon Grove) – One of the nation’s largest seizures of fentanyl ever, over 44 kilograms, has been announced by the U.S. Attorney’s office in San Diego.  Fentanyl is more than 50 times stronger than heroin, but has been used to boost potency of heroin or counterfeit opioid painkillers resembling oxycodone.  This has led to an “epidemic” of deaths from fentanyl-laced street drugs, according to prosecutors.


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