News

America’s Fentanyl Problem Is Reaching a Whole New Group of Users

Mother Jones - On a clear day in the summer of 2016, an ambulance arrived at the Yale New Haven Hospital carrying a man in his 60s with the classic signs of an opioid overdose: His breathing had stopped, his heart had slowed, and his blood pressure had dropped. Over the next six hours, 11 more people were admitted with similar symptoms, three of whom died. At first, the cause of the overdose cluster appeared to be the usual: Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid up to 100 times more powerful than morphine, had probably made its way into a batch of …

DA: Largest opioids seizure in Suffolk County history

Newsday - Federal agents seized more than 90 pounds of fentanyl and heroin with a $10 million street value — the largest opioid bust in Suffolk history — and charged a major supplier to Long Island drug dealers, the county’s top prosecutor said Thursday.

Agents with the Drug Enforcement Agency executed a search warrant Wednesday of a Wyandanch home and recovered 33 bags of heroin and fentanyl, Suffolk District Attorney Timothy Sini said.

William Velasquez, 38, who lives in the home, faces charges of operating as a major drug trafficker and criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Click to view

Elderly doctor, wife convicted of running $77M ‘pill mill’

New York Post - An 80-year-old Manhattan doctor and his 82-year-old wife were convicted Friday of running a $77 million prescription “pill mill.”

Dr. Rogelio Lucas and his wife of 55 years, Lydia, sat quietly together at the defense table as a jury found them guilty of 30 counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance.

The doctor and his wife worked with several major drug rings to distribute some 23,600 prescriptions for a whopping 3 million tablets of oxycodone, according to prosecutors with the Special Narcotics office.

During their years-long racket, the couple flooded the streets with approximately $77 …

Cash, weapons, Lamborghini seized in major drug bust in Queens, Brooklyn

LONG ISLAND CITY, Queens (WABC) -- Four suspects were arrested in Queens and Brooklyn overnight Wednesday in what is being described as a major drug bust.

The bust was the result of a long-running investigation that began with two overdose deaths involving fentanyl-laced heroin -- one in Bay Ridge in 2016 and one in Kew Gardens in May of 2017.

The alleged ringleader was identified as 35-year-old Dionne Sharrow (AKA "Slay"), who was arrested at his apartment in a luxury high-rise on 51st Avenue in Long Island City. Among the property seized there was a loaded firearm, approximately $500,000 in …

Drug Kingpin Stashed Fentanyl in ‘Seinfeld’ Apartment: DA

NBC New York - An alleged drug kingpin has been indicted on charges of flooding the New York City area with enough fentanyl to kill about 10 million people in an operation based out of an apartment that was featured in the hit 1990s sitcom "Seinfeld," prosecutors announced Tuesday.

Francisco Quiroz-Zamora is charged with the state's top narcotics charge, operating as a major trafficker, as well as conspiracy and criminal sale of a controlled substance. He and five co-defendants are named in the indictment.

Quiroz-Zamora, 41, was initially arrested in a sting operation late last year after he traveled to …

Opioid overdose among children nearly doubles, study says

CNN - The number of children admitted to hospitals for opioid overdose has nearly doubled since 2004, according to a new study.

The study, which published Monday in the journal Pediatrics, looked at children between ages 1 and 17 who were admitted to hospitals and pediatric intensive care units with opioid-related diagnoses from 2004 to 2015. Researchers found that the number of children admitted to hospitals for opioid overdose nearly doubled to 1,504 patients between 2012 and 2015, from 797 patients between 2004 and 2007.

The researchers cautioned that many of these children likely overdosed after stumbling upon their parents' …

Overshadowed by the Opioid Crisis: A Comeback by Cocaine

New York Times - The opioid epidemic just keeps getting worse, presenting challenges discussed at length at a White House summit last week. But opioids are not America’s only significant drug problem. Among illicit drugs, cocaine is the No. 2 killer and claims the lives of more African-Americans than heroin does.

In a recent study published in Annals of Internal Medicine, researchers from the National Cancer Institute and the National Institute on Drug Abuse found that drug-related deaths have grown across all racial groups and among both men and women. The analysis found that between 1999 and 2015, overdose deaths …

Close