Washington, DC – Mexican police have nabbed a over 1000 pounds of drugs bound for the U.S. a mere 50 miles from the U.S.-Mexico border. On Thursday, Mexican police seized a multi-drug shipment that included 100 pounds of the synthetic opioid fentanyl in a vehicle near the city of Ensenada in Baja California.
Fentanyl can be fatal in doses of just a few milligrams. To put the size of the haul in perspective, a seizure last year of 4.5 pounds of fentanyl in Columbus, Ohio, was said by prosecutors to be enough to potentially kill the entire population of the city of 860,000 people. The latest fetanyl seizure would have been enough to kill almost 20 million Americans, or almost three times the population of New York City.
Police in Mexico said the drug shipment seized near Ensenada also included 914 pounds of crystal meth, 88 pounds of cocaine and 18.5 pounds of heroin.
Police arrested a man who was driving the SUV stuffed with the drugs near Ensenada. The drugs were so bulky they were stuffed into a pile of sacks that filled the rear of the vehicle.
Mexican police stopped the man initially because he lacked a front license plate, otherwise the drugs would have made it into the U.S. Ensenada is located about an hour and a half south of Mexico’s border with California.
In November, Mexican authorities seized 31 pounds of fentanyl hidden in a car on a highway between the Gulf of California and San Luis Rio Colorado, which is home to a border crossing with Arizona.
An accidental overdose of fentanyl was determined to have killed music legend Prince in April 2016. And a coroner’s finding showed that among the medications found in the system of the late rock star Tom Petty were fentanyl and oxycodone. In 2016 alone, drug overdoes killed roughly 64,000 Americans, a rise of about 22 percent from the previous year, with almost all of the drugs coming from illicit sources in Mexico.
The U.S.-Mexico border is a long and porous border and facilitates industrial scale drug trafficking and illegal immigration. President Donald Trump has made constructing a border wall on the U.S. side of the border with Mexico a priority of his administration and given the number of Americans dying every year from Mexican drugs, the wall cannot be built soon enough.