August 8, 2022: CBP intercepts fentanyl pills on their way from India to Canada

This week:  Prosecutions, seizures and deaths related to counterfeit pressed pills in 10 states.

Counterfeit pills across the country

In the South

CBP tweet about the fentanyl pill seizure, August 2022.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers in Louisville, Kentucky seized five bottles of pills that tested positive for fentanyl on a relatively unusual route—from India to a residence in Ontario, Canada.  Like the U.S., Canada has a substantial problem with counterfeit pills made with synthetic opioids.

In the hopes of preventing more deaths, an Auburn, Alabama family spoke about losing their 17-year-old son Price Hornsby to a fake pill in March 2021.

A West Boca Raton, Florida resident is facing drug charges after he sold 20 fake Percocet pills made with fentanyl to an undercover agent for the Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office.

In Tallahassee, a man is facing first-degree murder and drug charges for allegedly providing Megan Hoffman with the counterfeit pills made with fentanyl that killed her on New Year’s Day in 2021.

A mother in East Baton Rouge, Louisiana was charged in the death of her two-year-old, who died of fentanyl poisoning after “getting into” her fentanyl pills.

Law enforcement found about 200 fentanyl pills, two firearms and more than $15,000 in cash in a Grove, Oklahoma residence after they received a tip that it was a site for drug dealing. The woman who lived there allegedly told authorities that she had purchased 1,000 of the pills over the last four months.

CBP officers working at the Paso Del Norte border crossing in Texas intercepted almost half a  pound of fentanyl pills during a pat-down search of a U.S. citizen.

In the Northeast

The Onondaga County [New York] Health Department warned that an uptick of drug deaths in the area was being fueled by counterfeit pills made with methamphetamine or fentanyl.

In the Midwest

A Minnesota state trooper seized more than 800 counterfeit oxycodone pills made with fentanyl during a traffic stop near the Goodhue County-Olmsted County line.

In Wisconsin, Public Health Madison & Dane County warned about the possibility of counterfeit pills in the area after several of the seven people who had suffered from drug poisonings over a 24-hour period reported taking oxycodone.

In the Mountain West

Twenty four pounds of counterfeit pills seized near Flagstaff, Arizona on July 26. (Arizona DPS)

Arizona’s Department of Public Safety reported seizing two pounds of fentanyl powder and 24 pounds of fentanyl pills during a traffic stop near Flagstaff in late July.

A Colorado family spoke about 31-year-old Sarah Claudio-Grizzel, who died of fentanyl poisoning in June 2022 after taking a pill she borrowed from a neighbor for back pain.

Deputies in Douglas County, Colorado seized more than 1,000 fentanyl pills, several stolen guns and other illicit drugs during a traffic stop near Meridian.

James Donavan Conour, of Wilder, Idaho, received a 124-month federal prison sentence for possession with intent to distribute narcotics, including several thousand fentanyl pills which were among the drugs seized during a search of his residence in 2021.

Albuquerque, New Mexico resident John Seibel received a 17-and-one-half-year federal prison sentence for drug distribution. Seibel sold fentanyl pills to undercover agents several times between April 2021 and June 15, 2021, when law enforcement searched his home and two other properties, seizing over 4300 grams of fentanyl pills, a pill press, a large quantity of methamphetamine and fentanyl powder, and $84,000.

A Colorado man and a Casper, Wyoming woman were arrested after Wyoming Division of Criminal Investigation agents identified them as fentanyl pill dealers and caught them with 115 suspected fentanyl pills and other drugs and drug paraphernalia during a traffic stop.

In the Pacific West

U.S. Border Patrol agents just north of the Murrieta, California Border Patrol Checkpoint seized 13 packages of fentanyl (seven in pill form) that they found hidden in the battery and spare tire in a 2018 Volkswagen Jetta.

Investigators with the Tulare County Drug Trafficking Task Force arrested a Tulare, California resident for alleged drug distribution after they found him with 500 fentanyl pills.

A federal grand jury indicted a Stockton, California resident after law enforcement officers found 83 pounds of methamphetamine and 8,800 counterfeit oxycodone pills made with fentanyl in his home.

Fentanyl hidden inside a car battery found near the Murrieta Border Patrol Checkpoint in California (CBP) 

A Washington man was arrested for controlled substance homicide after he allegedly supplied the counterfeit pills made with fentanyl that killed 30-year-old Aeschli Wilkinson in Blaine, Washington in May 2021.