Largest Fentanyl Bust at US Border Could Have Killed 56 Million People

U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials announced Thursday their biggest fentanyl bust ever, saying they captured nearly 254 pounds of the deadly synthetic opioid from a load of Mexican produce heading into Arizona.

The drug was found hidden Saturday morning inside a tractor-trailer after a scan during secondary inspection indicated something else was in the load, Nogales CBP Port Director Michael Humphries said.


The quantity of fentanyl, which is 80 to 100 times stronger than morphine, had the potential to kill nearly 56 million people, based on previously reported numbers from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration.

Ingesting as little as 2 milligrams of fentanyl, equivalent to a few grains of table salt, can be lethal, according to the DEA.

Agents also seized a much smaller number of fentanyl pills and a large cache of methamphetamine and arrested the Mexican man driving the truck,

Mexican traffickers have been increasingly smuggling the drug into the United States, mostly hidden in passenger vehicles and tractor-trailers trying to head through ports of entry in the Nogales, Arizona, and San Diego areas.—KOCO