Strike Force Unleashed: Treasury Targets Fentanyl Trafficking

( – The Treasury Department has announced the creation of a new group that will focus on stopping the inflow of deadly drugs, including fentanyl, into the US. The Counter-Fentanyl Task Force is a new Biden administration initiative resulting from a recent meeting with Chinese Premier Xi Jinping and his country’s promise to work with America to tackle the transport of the chemicals needed to create the drug, much of which comes from China.

Xi met with President Biden after a recent conference in California, where the Chinese leader pledged to prevent companies in China from exporting the materials used in Fentanyl’s manufacture. Xi Jinping also promised to share information about suspected traffickers with the US.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen stated that stopping Fentanyl’s deadly impact on American communities is a top priority for the Biden administration. “Treasury will use every tool at its disposal to disrupt the ability of drug traffickers to peddle this poison in our country,” she said.

Brian Nelson, from the Treasury, will team up with the leader of the Internal Revenue Service’s criminal investigations unit, James Lee, to direct the new task force. The group will target money laundering and trafficking networks and investigate sanctions violations. In 2021, an executive order from the White House gave the Treasury new powers to impose sanctions on those who profit or benefit from trafficking proceeds.

Brian Nelson and Janet Yellen plan to travel to Mexico to discuss trade improvements and cooperation on stopping fentanyl from passing through the US-Mexico border. “We believe that it’s in America’s and Mexico’s interest that Mexico implements economic policies that increase sustainable growth,” Yellen told reporters.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) claim fentanyl is associated with most of the drug overdose deaths in the US, and these have vastly increased to 106,000 in 2021—a 7.5-fold increase since 2015. In 2022, the US Drug Enforcement Administration seized over 50 million pills and 10,000 pounds of fentanyl.

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