Arizona State Troopers Seize More Than 262 Pounds of Fentanyl Pills
Arizona Department of Public Safety (AZDPS) troopers seized approximately 262.02 pounds of fentanyl pills in incidents across the state from Nov. 7 through Nov. 14, 2023, and arrested a total of eight suspects on related charges.
The first seizure occurred on Tuesday, Nov. 7, when a traffic stop near Fountain Hills for multiple civil traffic violations led to the discovery of 53 pounds of fentanyl pills concealed in a spare tire. Both the driver and passenger were arrested and booked into the Maricopa County Jail.
On Wednesday, Nov. 8, a trooper stopped a driver in the Wellton area for a civil traffic violation. During the stop, a drug detection canine alerted to the vehicle and troopers located 104.52 pounds of fentanyl pills concealed in boxes. Two suspects were arrested on drug-related charges.
On the morning of Friday, Nov. 10, a trooper observed indicators of criminal activity during a traffic stop in the Joseph City area. A subsequent alert from a canine led to the discovery of 25 pounds of fentanyl pills stashed in a backpack. Two suspects were arrested on drug-related charges.
Finally, during a traffic stop in the Eloy area on Tuesday, Nov. 14, a trooper located approximately 79.5 pounds of suspected fentanyl pills hidden inside a spare tire. Both the driver and passenger were booked into jail on drug-related charges.
The combined total of approximately 262.02 pounds of fentanyl pills seized in these incidents equates to approximately 1.18 million pills.
Investigators believe the pills were bound for Albuquerque, Phoenix, and Chicago.
Additionally, some of the pills seized in these incidents tested positive for xylazine, a powerful sedative that places users at a higher risk of suffering a fatal drug poisoning, according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).
Authorities are encouraging everyone to talk to their loved ones – especially teens – about the dangers of taking unknown pills. Lab testing by the DEA now shows roughly 7 out of every 10 fentanyl-laced fake prescription pills contain a potentially deadly dose of the powerful opiate. Visit dea.gov/fentanylawareness for more information.
“Thank you to Department of Public Safety troopers for keeping our communities safe from the deadly fentanyl epidemic,” said Governor Katie Hobbs. “Through vigilance and hard work, DPS prevented hundreds of pounds of fentanyl pills from being released into the streets and have potentially saved countless lives. I will continue to relentlessly fight the fentanyl crisis, stopping the flow of drugs throughout our state, and holding drug traffickers accountable for spreading poison in our communities.”