Mexican Cartels Targeting Montana With Fentanyl Because of High Profits: Officials

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Mexican drug cartels crossing the southern border are targeting the state of Montana with fentanyl because there are “tremendous profits” to be made there, according to officials.

Montana Attorney General Austin Knudsen told Fox News that the number of fentanyl deaths in the state has been drastically increasing since 2020 and that intelligence has shown that drug cartels from Mexico have been specifically targeting Montana to bolster their profits.

“Since 2020, our crime lab confirmed fentanyl deaths increased 1,100 percent,” Knudsen said on June 22. “We do have specific cartel intelligence that they’re targeting Montana because they know they can make tremendous profit here selling a product that costs them next to nothing to make.”

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid used to treat severe pain, but it’s also highly addictive.

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has previously stated that traffickers are putting fentanyl in fake prescription pills such as OxyContin, Percocet, and Vicodin, which are common drugs used to treat moderate to severe pain, but are also widely abused among addicts.

Knudsen told Fox that a blue M30 tablet (Oxycodone pills) would sell for $10 to $15 in Phoenix, Denver, or Salt Lake City, but in Montana, they can sell for about $100 because the state is situated further from the border, meaning there’s less availability or access to illegal drugs.

“You have to understand that the cartels in Mexico can produce these fentanyl tablets for pennies on the dollar,” he said. “There’s a huge profit motive for the cartels.”

The attorney general added that law enforcement officials are routinely finding criminals traveling with up to 10,000 tablets, an amount large enough to kill every man, woman, and child in Montana.

Highly Addictive

Dr. Robert Sherrick, the chief medical officer for Community Medical Services, which operates four opioid treatment centers in Montana and 46 others nationwide, told Fox that roughly 70 percent of the patients that visit his centers have an opioid-use disorder and test positive for fentanyl.

By Katabella Roberts

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