Customs and Border Protection seized more of the deadly fentanyl drug in the first half of 2021 already exceeding the entirety of fiscal year 2020, the agency’s data showed.
As the crisis at the southern border continues, CBP announced last week that seizures of fentanyl in April were up by 34 percent over March. March’s seizures in turn had been down by 28 percent since February, Fox News reported.
As of April, 6,494 pounds of fentanyl were seized by authorities at the border in fiscal year 2021, compared to 4,776 pounds in all of 2020. Fentanyl seizures have been increasing since 2018 according to data.
Fentanyl, an incredibly potent opioid used for pain treatment is 50-100 times stronger than morphine. According to the CDC, more than 36,000 people died from overdoses involving synthetic opioids like fentanyl in 2019.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott blamed President Joe Biden’s border policies for the surge of migrants at the Texas-Mexico border and eliminating some of Trump’s stricter policies is creating “opportunities” for cartels, which are “ramping up trafficking” and drug smugglers who have access to drugs like fentanyl, cocaine and opioids.
Abbott said that the state’s Department of Public Safety has seen an 800 percent increase over April of fentanyl seizures.
“We have obtained enough fentanyl coming across the border to kill every single person in the state of New York,” he said Friday.
The CBP announced that it encountered 178,622 migrants trying to enter the U.S. in April, a three percent increase over the approximately 172,000 encountered in March, which was the highest number in 20 years, Fox News reported.
“CBP continues to see a large influx of illegal migration along the Southwest Border,” acting CBP Commissioner Troy Miller said in a statement.