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Fentanyl and meth seizures have soared in Mexico since 2019

Federal seizures of fentanyl and meth are soaring in Mexico as cartels have begun churning out increased quantities of the deadly synthetic drugs while also importing it from China.

According to seizure figures issued Monday by Mexico’s Defense Department, seizures of the synthetic opioid fentanyl soared 525% in the first three years of the current administration, which took office Dec. 1, 2018, compared to the previous three years. Law enforcement seized 1,232 pounds (559 kilograms) of fentanyl in 2016-2018 and 7,710 pounds (3,497 kilograms) in 2019-2021.

The defense secretary, Gen. Luis Cresencio Sandoval, acknowledged there has been a huge shift by Mexican cartels away from naturally grown drugs like opium and marijuana, where seizures and crop eradication have fallen.

But he said seizures of the synthetic opioid fentanyl soared 525% in the first three years of the current administration, which took office Dec. 1, 2018, compared to the previous three years. Law enforcement seized 1,232 pounds (559 kilograms) of fentanyl in 2016-2018 and 7,710 pounds (3,497 kilograms) in 2019-2021.

Seizures of methamphetamines, meanwhile, more than doubled. Meth seizures rose from 120,100 pounds (54,521 kilograms) in 2016-2018 to almost 275,000 pounds (124,735 kilograms) in the last three years, an increase of 128%.

Mexican authorities say part of that increase is due to an increase in fentanyl globally which Mexican cartels obtain via organized crime in China to press into pills or mix into other drugs.

“There was a change in consumption, there was a change in drug markets due to the ease of producing synthetic drugs,” Sandoval said. For example, cartels no longer have to pay farmers to grow opium poppies and painstakingly collect the opium past that oozes from the bulbs.

Source: Excelsior

Mexico Daily Post

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