There is concern within Ecuador After the police’s National Narcotics Directorate confirmed the discovery of “seven vials of fentanyl” on Monday, Guayaquil Bay, a popular commercial area in the heart of the port city, has a high rate of homicides. South American country. Additionally, the United States considers the country a collection center for this powerful synthetic opioid.
According to the police report, after carrying out investigation and passing information, the police officers National Chemicals Research Unit (UNSQ) They went to a warehouse Guayaquil Bay KThey stockpiled drugs smuggled through the southern border of the country.
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In the middle of the surgery, sensitive drugs were discovered They are sold without a prescription on the black market108 blister packs of diazepam, 140 blister packs of clonazepam, 98 blister packs of alprazolam and seven blister packs of Fentanyl 10 mg each.
“Catch Fentanyl “This drew the attention of agents of the National Police’s chemical unit, and medical science has determined that this synthetic substance is 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine.”The report says.
Police said Continuous improvement of control functions Discover other secret points of sale Fentanyl In order to remove it from circulation and prevent its consumption.
Overall, the Ecuadorian police
Since August 2022, three operations have seized 128 fentanyl vials.
According to the portal Primicias.ECHe Fentanyl was discovered In Guayaquil This is Legal medical use Not contaminated with chemical precursors consumed by drug addicts.
Still, the Fentanyl Blisters must be sold exclusively under medical prescription.
Primisias described each of these Blisters Sold up to 5 dollars on the black market. Medicine reaches these unauthorized places through people who have lost family members to cancer and who sell the leftovers. This is done by people connected to the health care system, and they steal Fentanyl It should be provided confidentially.
“The problem is Fentanyl Illegal design, it comes in form Blue pills And it is contaminated with other drugs like H and consumers don’t know they are using it,” Dr. Julieta Sagne, psychiatrist and addiction specialist, told Primisias.
Excess mortality rate
According to a study led by the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA), the use of fentanyl in combination with stimulants in the United States will increase more than 50-fold between 2010 and 2021, from 235 to 34,429.
H can be mixed with fentanyl
Before this seizure, In Guayaquil I was already wary of him Fentanyl. This was after four drug users were admitted to the municipal hospital in August Severe body pain and swelling, drooping, diverting eyes and who did not respond to treatment. Later, health officials speculated about possible consumption FentanylThe company EFE noted.
So far the cases remain doubtful.
EFE interviewed the Municipal Health Director Juan Carlos González, who said that patients are consumers.H“, a dangerous mixture of heroin with cement waste, rat poison and other substances, is widely used In Guayaquil Because of its low price (50 cents on the dollar) and high addiction, in 2016 it sparked police interventions in at least four neighborhoods inundated with micro-trafficking.
Now experts believe that “H” is still installed In Guayaquil And it is feared that it may be mixed with more narcotic substances Fentanyl.
“Treatment becomes more difficult because the patient already has so many drugs. It used to be 10 or 12 days before the (hospital) stay, if they were detoxified, now it takes 20 days or a little more, precisely because of this combination of things,” said Dr. Gonzalez.
Confirmed by EFE’s Health Directorate In Guayaquil is in the process of receiving tests to determine Fentanyl And NaloxoneIt is used in overdose to avoid cardiorespiratory arrest.
What is Fentanyl?
According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) America, The Fentanyl It is a synthetic opioid It is 50 times stronger than heroin and 100 times stronger than morphine. It is a major contributing factor to fatal and fatal overdoses in the United States.
There are two types of fentanyl: Pharmacist And this Illegally manufactured. Both are considered synthetic opioids.
He The drug is fentanyl It is recommended by doctors to treat severe pain especially after surgery and in advanced stages of cancer.
However, recent cases of drug-related overdoses Fentanyl Related to illegally manufactured drugs that are distributed in illegal drug markets because of them Heroin-like effect.
Often, the Fentanyl is combined with other drugs Because of its extreme potency, it makes drugs cheaper, more powerful, more addictive and dangerous.
Illicitly produced fentanyl is available on the drug market in different formsincluding liquid and powder.
Fentanyl powder looks like many drugs. It is often mixed with drugs such as heroin, cocaine, and methamphetamine to form pills that look like other prescription opioids. Fentanyl-laced drugs are extremely dangerousAnd many people don’t even know it’s in their medicine.
within it liquid form, Illegally manufactured fentanyl can be used as a nasal spray, eye drops, or drops in paper or small candies.
Medicines can contain lethal doses FentanylAnd you can’t see, taste or smell it.
Symptoms of overdose
- Small, constricted, pinpoint pupils.
- Sleep or lose consciousness.
- Slow, weak, or no breathing.
- Wheezing or wheezing.
- Slender body.
- Cold or clammy skin.
- Blemishes on the skin (especially on the lips and nails).
Ecuador in the fentanyl supply chain
On Tuesday, the US State Department’s counternarcotics chief, Todd RobinsonExcept for Mexico, he said his country has found. Colombia and Ecuador are also involved in fentanyl trafficking.
“Mexico is the main port of entry, but we know there are other countries that participate in the supply chain. Colombia and Ecuador. There are also suppliers in Asia. There are many points that affect America.”Robinson noted.
Robinson pointed out that the production chain FentanylIt has caused thousands of deaths AmericaStarting at China, chemicals used in the manufacture of medicines are sold. These precursors reach the United States, producing mainly Mexican cartels Fentanyl They send it to the US border, he added.
Robinson made these statements in New York, where he participated in an event on the Global Alliance Against Synthetic Medicines organized by the United States as part of the 78th UN General Assembly.
According to the United States Department of Justice, Mexican The Sinaloa Cartel and his sect Los ChapitosLed by the children of Joaquín ‘El Chapo’ Guzmán, he led the drug-trafficking operation. Fentanyl The world’s largest, most violent and most prosperous.”
Los Chapitos Can be received from 2014, that date ConspiracyAbout 1 billion dollars from sales Fentanyl.
In Mexico, fentanyl is made mixed with other drugs in hidden cartel labs in the Sinaloa Mountains. The cargo is then transported in private cars that cross the US border. It is carried by people who hide it under their clothes, in commercial trucks, air parcels, and boats, through boats and tunnels that are smuggled across California waters.
From a kilo of chemical precursors bought for $800, Los Chapitos produces about 415,000 fentanyl pills, or 4 kilos of powder. Each pill sells for 50 cents in most of the United States, but in New York the price rises to $3. This turns an $800 investment into a profit of up to $640,000, according to Univisión.
“If Ecuador consolidates itself as a fentanyl producer, consumption will rise”
Ernesto Anceta, lawyer, expert in security issues
Although there are those who consider it the last operation In Guayaquil This is a media conspiracy to draw attention to the issue FentanylIn fact it indicates that the drug is already there Ecuador. Its presence is feared to displace other types of “soft” drugs in the domestic market.
It is estimated that there is trade and consumption Fentanyl Under the local scale system, the dose can be as low as 5 dollars and is designed for addicts from popular sectors. Another, more sophisticated, method of selling is online, which is more complex to control and has greater access to another type of social strata.
The immediate concern is: if Ecuador consolidates itself as a manufacturing hub FentanylAnything that doesn’t make it to the US market will be available and consumption will rise.
Whether the country is a collection point Fentanyl It was imposed on the United States, it must be said that the dynamics of insecurity make countries like Mexico, Colombia and Ecuador a safe place for drug trafficking, so the collection of this drug is a reality in the country, but I repeat that compared to other alternatives, it becomes a place of production because of the cheapness of the process. worrisome.