Meth Seizures on the Rise: DEA

Methamphetamine seizures by law enforcement are on the rise, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

The DEA is concerned about an increase in meth trafficking and related deaths around the United States, The Wall Street Journal reports. Meth is becoming more common in areas such as the Northeast. According to the DEA, 347,807 law-enforcement meth seizures were submitted to labs in 2017, up 118 percent from 2010.

“Everybody’s biggest fear is what’s it going to look like if meth hits us like fentanyl did,” said Jon DeLena, second-in-command at the DEA’s New England office.

Full story at drugfree.org

DEA Rule Allows Criminal Prosecution for Fentanyl Trafficking

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will classify illicit versions of fentanyl at the same level as heroin, Reuters reports. The action will make it easier for federal prosecutors and agents to prosecute traffickers of all forms of fentanyl-related substances, the agency said.

Legally prescribed fentanyl is classified as a Schedule II drug, which means it is highly addictive but has a medical purpose. The new DEA order classifies illicit fentanyl as a Schedule I drug, along with heroin. Schedule I drugs are considered addictive, with no medicinal purpose.

Full story at APTA

Tom Marino Withdraws Nomination as Head of White House Drug Control Office

Representative Tom Marino of Pennsylvania announced this week he is withdrawing his name from consideration as head of the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. His decision comes in the wake of a Washington Post and 60 Minutes joint report that concluded legislation Marino sponsored hampered efforts by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) to fight the opioid epidemic.

The legislation, the Ensuring Patient Access and Effective Drug Enforcement Act, was opposed by the DEA, and supported by drug companies, NPR reports. It changed the standard for identifying dangers of opioids to local communities from “imminent” threats to “immediate” threats. This impeded the DEA’s authority to freeze suspicious shipments of opioids in order to reduce the flow of painkillers to the black market, the article notes.

Full story at drugfree.org

DEA Adds New Fentanyl Drug to List of Banned Substances

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has added another fentanyl-related drug, known as furanyl fentanyl, to its list of banned substances, according to The Wall Street Journal.

Furanyl fentanyl started appearing in a national database that tracks drug seizures in December 2015, the article notes. The drug has been linked with 325 deaths through October of this year.

Full story of Fentanyl drug banned at drugfree.org

DEA Receives More Than 22,000 Comments on Proposal to Ban Kratom

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) has received more than 22,000 comments about its plan to temporarily ban the drug kratom, according to The Washington Post.

The agency in October said it would reverse its decision to temporarily make kratom a Schedule I drug in the wake of protests by advocates, scientists and kratom vendors. Schedule I drugs are considered to have a high potential for abuse and to have no currently accepted medical treatment use.

Full story of proposal to ban the drug Kratom at drugfree.org