In a record-breaking drug bust in Rhode Island, federal agents seized hundreds of thousands of methamphetamine laced fake pills.
The DOJ and DEA announced that over 660,000 counterfeit Adderall pills laced with meth were seized, making it the largest seizure on record.
Officials are estimating the pills to be worth $4.6 million in street value.
“We believe this to be the single largest seizure of fake Adderall pills in the United States, as well as among the largest seizures of methamphetamine in DEA New England Field Division history,” Zachary A. Cunha, U.S. Attorney for the District of Rhode Island, said in remarks Monday. “The quantity of methamphetamine represented by this seizure – methamphetamine that was packaged, prepped, and ready to flow out onto the street, to devastating effect in our communities – is staggering.”
The Boston Globe reported that a confidential source provided information to the DEA that the suspect was supplying the fake pills laced with meth.
Additionally, the source also revealed that the suspected produced and sold “thousands” of the pills.
The agency worked with the source to purchase from the suspect, leading to agents executing search warrants at two locations in Cumberland, Rhode Island.
In addition to the pills, agents seized two motorized pill presses and a bucket that contained 40 pounds of meth mixture ready to be pressed into pill form.
They also seized:
- 1500 pills laced with fentanyl
- 11 kilograms of methamphetamine powder
- 250 grams of crack cocaine
- $15,000 cash, and
- Seven handguns, including two so-called “ghost guns,” and two more guns with destroyed serial numbers
Authorities believe it is likely that the meth came from Mexican drug cartels and the suspect was a low-level dealer.
The suspect has been charged with possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine, which carries a minimum sentence of 10 years in prison.
The U.S. attorney offered a warning about counterfeit pills. “Pills that contain these drugs … don’t come stamped with the label ‘fentanyl’ or ‘meth,'” said Cunha. “They are … deliberately made to look like something else- whether its Adderall®, or Percocet®, or some other drug that the buyer may think is safe and what it appears to be.”
“If you, or a loved one, are buying or taking pills … from anywhere that is not a pharmacy or a physician, the odds are that it’s not what you think,” he added. “And if whatever you get is laced with fentanyl, that pill may be the last thing you take- that’s not hyperbole- it’s a grim truth.”