Intelligence gathered by agents from the Oklahoma Department of Corrections’ (ODOC) Office of the Inspector General (OIG) resulted in the seizure of 2,500 fentanyl pills intended for an Oklahoma prison the agency reported today.
Inspector General Ted Woodhead estimated the value of the pills inside a prison to be at least $125,000.
“The value of these pills could potentially be more depending on the security level of the facility,” Woodhead said. “It’s a lot of pills to be seized at once.”
Utilizing intelligence gathered as part of ongoing efforts to stop the introduction of contraband into ODOC facilities, agents from the Criminal Interdiction Division contacted investigators from the United States Postal Service (USPS) to locate the drugs using their tracking number. USPS investigators determined the package was in a sorting facility in Oklahoma City.
On July 5, OIG and USPS investigators intercepted the package and seized it as evidence. The sender’s information on the package listed a return address in Bowling Green, Kentucky. However, agents believe the sender used an alias.
No charges have been filed yet as a result of this investigation, which is ongoing. Fentanyl is produced in China then shipped to Mexico for import into America. Drug dealers sell it often online as a prescription drug by other names and many unsuspectingly die in this criminal poisoning.
The seized pills were stamped “M30” to indicate they are counterfeit oxycodone, which exponentially increases their lethality. Fentanyl, the driving force behind a nationwide overdose epidemic, is 100 times more powerful than morphine and cheaper to produce. Fentanyl and fentanyl-laced drugs are pushed heavily by traffickers because they increase the user’s high while at the same time increasing the dealer’s profit margins. A microscopic dose of fentanyl is enough to kill an adult, meaning any pill containing the substance can be lethal.
“There’s no doubt this seizure saved lives,” said ODOC Director Scott Crow. “Not only will we avoid inmates overdosing in a facility, but we have removed a dangerously valuable commodity from the inmate population, one which would otherwise be used to control people and incite violence.”
“The intelligence-gathering efforts of the Criminal Interdiction Division of the OIG continue to deliver to results that protect inmates, staff, and the public.”
Broadcast news reports on the fentanyl crisis follow.
For more click here for Fentanyl Deaths Climbing, DEA Washington