Narcotics and Drugs: The Opioid Crisis

Narcotics and Drugs: The Opioid Crisis

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Politicians speak frequently about Narcotics and Drugs. Recently, the Trump administration rolled out a plan to combat the opioid crisis, which includes increased funding for Medicaid recipients struggling with addiction and testing for opioids in prisons to direct people towards treatment centers. Also among these measures is a plan to subject some drug cases to the death penalty. No matter where one stands on these efforts, the first question should be: how effective will these measures be?

To answer this question, some background on the current opioid crisis is warranted. A massive setback to progress has been the introduction of fentanyl into the US black market. In 2016, the DEA saw an increase in the importation of fentanyl and fentanyl manufacturing products. In the past, the illegal sale of fentanyl has focused mainly on alleged Mexican cartels that add the drug to heroin smuggled into the U.S. However, according to some drug investigators, China is also allegedly responsible for providing both raw fentanyl and the machinery necessary for the production of the drug. “We have seen an influx of fentanyl directly from China,” said Carole Rendon, the acting US attorney for the norther district of Ohio in Cleveland. “It’s being shipped by carrier. It’s hugely concerning because fentanyl is so incredibly deadly.”

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China’s alleged shipping of fentanyl to the US gives North American drug dealers the ability to mass produce fentanyl in pill form. In some cases, dealers produce pills that are identical to the often-abused painkiller OxyContin. It has also been added to both Xanax and hydrocodone. The fentanyl pills are disguised as other painkillers, because those drugs are worth more on the street, even though they are less potent.

With the introduction of illegal fentanyl, it seems that the opioid crisis is getting worse. Fentanyl is much stronger than heroin and other painkilling prescription drugs. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, fentanyl is up to 100 times more potent than morphine and many times that of heroin.

The danger lies in the end user not knowing exactly what they are taking. Drug users are generally unaware of when their heroin is laced with fentanyl or when the pills they buy off the street are actually fentanyl pills. So, when they inject their “usual” amount of heroin or take their “usual” number of pills they may inadvertently take a deadly dose.  If you or someone you love is in trouble because of Narcotics and Drugs, first and foremost they may need medical treatment immediately. Withdrawal from drugs and alcohol can become a medical emergency. Do not delay. Avoiding treatment could be catastrophic.

In addition to medical consequences, there can be significant legal ramifications from using or dealing drugs. If someone you love is in legal trouble because of narcotics, contact an experienced Michigan drug attorney today. At the Law Office of John Freeman, we can help. We regularly defend persons charged with possession, distribution, and conspiracy to distribute fentanyl, heroin, cocaine, Xanax, pain-killers, and marijuana, in addition to forfeiture and money laundering charges.