Authorities seized a $4 million load of fentanyl and cocaine suspected of being smuggled through Mecklenburg and Gaston counties, police said Friday.
A K-9 found 53 pounds of fentanyl, the most common drug distributed in Charlotte, and 26 pounds of cocaine last week in a vehicle involved in the trafficking, according to a news release from the Gaston County Police Department.
One pill, or about 2 mg of fentanyl, is enough to kill a person, according to the DEA. Fifty-three pounds of fentanyl could make more than 24 million pills.
Last year, the Department of Homeland Security Investigations seized three times the amount of fentanyl capable of killing all the residents of North Carolina and South Carolina.
It is unclear what led authorities to the car, if anyone was with the car, or where the car was located. Gaston County police said Friday that the investigation is ongoing and no one has yet been charged.
Last week, police arrested a Gastonia man for 13 charges related to fentanyl trafficking. They found an additional 3,000 fentanyl pills in his possession.
Most of the fentanyl trafficking cases in Charlotte are linked to the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG), a Mexico-based transnational drug trafficking organization with a well-established network in the Carolinas. according Michael Prado, Deputy Special Agent in Charge of Charlotte Homeland Security Investigations.
TO new Republican-sponsored Senate bill pushing through the North Carolina General Assembly would increase fines and penalties for fentanyl distribution.