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$1.5 million worth of fentanyl, powder seized by gang investigators in Riverside County

Bags containing fentanyl and powdered fentanyl and three firearms.
Over the last two weeks, the Riverside County Gang Impact Team seized 40,000 pills containing fentanyl and five kilograms of powdered fentanyl.
(Riverside County district attorney’s office)

The Riverside County Gang Impact Team seized more than $1.5 million worth of fentanyl-laced drugs over the past two weeks, the Riverside County district attorney’s office said Monday.

The seizure found about 40,000 M30 pills containing fentanyl, five kilograms of powdered fentanyl and three firearms, the district attorney’s office said.

The operation occurred over three separate investigations conducted by the gang unit across Riverside County over a two-week period.

Parents whose children died of fentanyl-laced pills are demanding stricter penalties and are lobbying Silicon Valley for social media protections.

Fentanyl is a man-made synthetic opiate that is known to be highly addictive and cheaper than other opiates. It’s also 50 times more powerful than heroin and 100 times more powerful than morphine, according to the news release.

The district attorney’s office noted that this is an ongoing investigation, which is part of a greater effort by Riverside County to stop the flow of fentanyl in the county and help save lives.

“Hundreds of people are dying every year in Riverside County due to fentanyl poisoning. Victims, including young people, are illegally obtaining pills they believe are oxycodone or Percocet but instead, contain fentanyl,” the news release said. “It only takes two milligrams of fentanyl to potentially be a fatal dose and a teaspoon contains 5,000 milligrams.”

This seizure comes during a time when California lawmakers are attempting to crack down on the surge of fentanyl overdoses and deaths in the state.

One bill would make it a felony to possess 2 or more grams of the synthetic opioid.

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In May, three teenage girls in Los Angeles overdosed after taking fentanyl-laced pills, alarming school districts, which sent warning letters to parents about the dangers of fentanyl. Similar warnings were echoed this month in San Diego County, where deaths involving the synthetic drug have shot up 2,300% in the region since 2016.


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