The US government announced sanctions and indictments against 14 Chinese and Canadian firms for importing fentanyl on Tuesday, The Guardian reported.
Officials from the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security target a “major China-based syndicate” for allegedly selling fentanyl to drug dealers and cartels.
The majority of firms targeted are Chinese, but some are Canadian. This includes a Chinese pharmaceutical that shipped xylazine, a horse tranquilizer often mixed to fentanyl, to the U.S. and Mexico. One of the purchasers of these chemicals would be a drug trafficker associated with the Sinaloa Cartel.
The Treasury Department announced sanctions against 28 people and companies that would be involved in importing fentanyl, along with methamphetamine and MDMA to the U.S. The sanctions will cut them from the financial system and will prohibit any American company or person from doing business with them.
In May, the Justice department brought a series of indictments against people involved with the Sinaloa Cartel, described as the most “prolific fentanyl trafficking operation in the world”. One of the people indicted is the now extradited Ovidio Guzmán López, 36, a son of former cartel leader Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán Loera.
More than 100,000 people have died from drug overdose since 2020 and about two thirds of those are related to fentanyl.
So far the Biden administration has imposed over 200 actions aimed to cut off the fentanyl traffic.