CRIME, POLICE + COURTS

DEA warns fentanyl most deadly drug in U.S. and Utah history

Mar 27, 2024, 5:00 PM

FILE: The bust of 30 pounds of fentanyl in American Fork on March 21 highlights the drug problem Ut...

FILE: The bust of 30 pounds of fentanyl in American Fork on March 21 highlights the drug problem Utah is facing. The DEA said it is on track to see double the amount of fentanyl in the state this year compared to last year. (Washington County Sheriff's Office)

(Washington County Sheriff's Office)

SALT LAKE CITY — The bust of 30 pounds of fentanyl in American Fork on March 21 highlights the drug problem Utah is facing. The DEA said it is on track to see double the amount of fentanyl in the state this year compared to last year.

The Drug Enforcement Agency said fentanyl is the focus of most of their drug investigations.

Special Agent Dustin Gillespie of the DEA’s Salt Lake City division called fentanyl the most potent and deadly drug in the history of our country and state.

“Just our office last year in 2023, we seized about 665,000 [fentanyl] pills. In 2024, we’re already on pace to knock that out of the park,” he said.

Part of what makes fentanyl so dangerous is that most other illicit drugs — such as heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine — are now laced with it. Users may not know what or how much fentanyl they’re taking, Gillespie warns.

Gillespie said the DEA is making an effort to crack down on high-level distributors and suppliers bringing drugs in from Mexico.

Related: Life expectancy and drug overdose rates rose in 2022

 

 

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DEA warns fentanyl most deadly drug in U.S. and Utah history