Menendez pushing bill that would curb synthetic opioid trafficking

Mark Abrams
April 08, 2019 - 8:18 am

Danielle Parhizkaran/ TODAY NETWORK


PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — New Jersey Sen. Bob Menendez is coming to Camden on Monday to promote legislation targeting international trafficking in fentanyl.

Mendez has signed on to a bipartisan measure called the Fentanyl Sanctions Act.

Drug manufacturers in China who knowingly provide synthetic opioids to traffickers, and transnational criminal organizations like those in Mexico would face sanctions under the proposed law.

It would also provide new funding to law enforcement and intelligence agencies to combat the foreign trafficking of opioids.

Fentanyl is a powerful synthetic opioid that is similar to morphine. Drug dealers mix fentanyl with heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamines. That toxic mix is blamed for thousands of overdoses and deaths ,annually.

The Port of Philadelphia was the site of a major fentanyl bust last summer, when inspectors discovered 110 pounds of the drug worth $1.7 million hidden on a Chinese cargo ship.

Menendez is appearing at a 1 p.m. event Monday at Wiggins Park on the Camden Waterfront.

The Fentanyl Sanctions Act was introduced by New Hampshire Democratic Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, and its co-sponsors also include New York Democratic Senate Leader Chuck Schumer and Republican senators Marco Rubio of Florida and Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.