An alarming report revealed that the deadly Sinaloa Cartel and other Mexican criminal enterprises now target expanding their reach into Alaska. They already succeeded in flooding the state’s urban areas with fentanyl and other dangerous narcotics.
Law enforcement agencies, according to the Courier Journal, are battling the wave of destruction while facing challenges unique to Alaska. Many parts of the state are remote and even inaccessible.
This means that once cartels have a foothold in an area of Alaska, there is little or no competition for their products. It also results in prices being set by drug dealers due to the absence of rivals.
James Klugman is the head of federal criminal prosecutions for the state’s U.S. Attorney’s Office. He said the cartels know there is money to be made peddling their deadly drugs in Alaska.
Klugman noted, “An amount of drugs that wouldn’t even move the needle in big cities like Los Angeles or New York can completely change the life of an entire community in Alaska.”
Check out this story from USA TODAY: Mexican cartels send drugs into Alaska, spurring death toll
The notorious Sinaloa Cartel and others are pummeling Alaska with deadly fentanyl. Here, they face less competition and can drive up the price.https://t.co/ctH5OegejG
— Dan Free (@Danfreeb) October 9, 2023
Distribution begins in cities such as Anchorage, Juneau and Fairbanks. From there it reaches remote areas that include tiny islands and the state’s Arctic region.
The state already feels the terrible effect of attention it now draws from Mexican drug organizations. It suffered a crippling 75% surge in drug overdose fatalities just in 2021.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported this is the highest increase anywhere in the U.S. As a whole, the nation now loses almost 107,000 lives every year to overdoses.
The FBI’s Brandon Waddle, who is an assistant special agent in Anchorage, said the deadly drugs have spread to every corner of Alaska. They are even found in tiny villages with less than 50 people.
According to Waddle, “what keeps me up at night is the fact that fentanyl is killing our small, most vulnerable communities. The opioid crisis is attacking us, and we don’t have enough personnel to effectively combat it.”
The state suffered 253 fatal overdoses in 2021, and about 76% of those involved synthetic narcotics such as fentanyl.
By its very nature, Alaska is difficult to patrol. The nation’s largest state draws the sporting public due to remote and unique locations that are as vast as they are uncontrollable.