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Abbott launches ‘One Pill Kills’ campaign in Texas, the rest of the nation should follow suit

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Gov. Greg Abbott launched the “One Pill Kills” campaign in Texas this week, in response to the growing number of deaths attributed to the counterfeit fentanyl pills pouring into the United States across the southern border. It is a growing crisis that is causing alarm throughout the nation, due to growing numbers of unsuspecting people that have been killed by the counterfeit pills, which have the appearance of medical grade pharmaceuticals.

The Texas governor held a roundtable discussion Monday with state and local law enforcement officials. He outlined what the state has done to target the cartels distributing Fentanyl and noted at the discussion that Fentanyl is the single deadliest drug threat in Texas and across the nation. He said it is killing four Texans every day.

“Across the nation Fentanyl is the number one cause of death in Americans between the ages of 18 and 45. From February 2021 to February 2022, more than 75,000 Americans died as a result of fentanyl-related overdoses. In the past year, Texas law enforcement alone has seized over 342 million lethal doses of fentanyl—enough to kill every man, woman, and child in the United States,”  Abbott’s press release stated.

These facts alone are terrifying. I believe it is essential that every state adopt the ‘One Pill Kills’ campaign. The DEA is also leading the way by implementing a national program earlier this year because in reality we are playing catch up against our enemies. We can’t afford not to do it and every child, man and woman in America needs to understand the seriousness of this crisis.

Abbott’s measure is also more than just talk. It will give the state of Texas the ability to take action against traffickers.

“Fentanyl remains the single deadliest drug threat our state and nation has ever encountered, killing four Texans every day,” said Abbott. “Fentanyl is a clandestine killer, with Mexican drug cartels strategically manufacturing and distributing the drug disguised as painkillers, stimulants, anti-anxiety drugs, and even candy. In the Biden Administration’s negligence to address this national security threat, Texas has designated Mexican drug cartels as terrorist organizations and is launching a statewide public awareness campaign to fight the fentanyl crisis in our state.”

Abbott added that the ” ‘One Pill Kills’ campaign to remind Texans that just one pill laced with fentanyl can take someone’s life. Together, we will protect more innocent lives from being lost to this deadly drug.”

Further, he announced new laws to be considered this upcoming legislative session that would classify fentanyl as a poisoning. This is exactly what victims families of fentanyl poisoning deaths want and the reason the public must be warned.

New proposed laws would be stringent. These laws  would charge individuals that  distribute fentanyl or drugs laced with fentanyl that kill someone with murder. The proposals will also make NARCAN, used to revive persons of drug overdoses, more readily available across the state for Texans exposed to fentanyl, the Governor’s press release stated.

DEA Administrator Anne Milgram has also made it her mission to get the word out about the deadly fentanyl pills pouring into the United States by the drug cartels. In a letter she sent in April to local law enforcement across the nation Milgram stated “fentanyl is killing Americans at an unprecedented rate…Already this year, numerous mass overdose  events have resulted in dozens of overdoses and deaths. Drug traffickers are driving addiction, and increasing their profits, by mixing fentanyl with other illicit drugs.”

In a recent episode of The Sara Carter Show podcast, I interviewed Virginia Krieger. She lost her daughter Tiffany to fentanyl poisoning and has made it her mission to warn parents all across the nation about the dangers of taking any kind of pill that is not prescribed by a personal doctor. In fact, what most people fail to realize is that the majority of precursor chemicals used to produce fentanyl comes from China and is imported into Mexico where the drug cartels mix the batches and create the counterfeit pills before illegally trafficking it to the United States.

Krieger is the co-founder of the ‘Lost Voices of Fentanyl’ Facebook page. It is a space where family members of thousands of victims gather to console and encourage one another and stay resolved to confront this nightmare in our neighborhoods.

She told me during the podcast that her daughters loss “was a shock. It was nothing we expected. She wasn’t what most people believe these victims to be. You know, we’re losing young people from all different walks of life from all financial and racial backgrounds, many of whom do not have an existing addiction problem.”

In Tiffany’s case, she had fallen through a porch and injured her back.

According to Krieger, her daughter “did everything she should do. She went to the doctor in the emergency room, and she got the referral to the neurosurgeon.”

“And while she was waiting for that appointment, someone offered her a Percocet,” said Krieger. It was a friend of Tiffanys.

“She knew what they were, she’d had them before,” Krieger added. “There was no reason to be alarmed by it. And you know, it was an act of compassion by someone who saw that she was in pain that claimed her life. And that pill was a fake pill. It contained illicit fentanyl, and it killed her. And she was on a 26 years old. And this story is playing out over and over and over again. Across the country. These fake pills are everywhere.”

The counterfeit fentanyl pills look like Xanax, Adderall, Vicodin,  Percocet among other pills.

“They’re finding it in ecstasy and cocaine and party drugs that didn’t use to kill people,” she said. “But now they are. And it’s most of the users like Tiffany, were deceived. And so my daughter didn’t overdose and people use that word all the time. That is not what happened to her. The word overdose implies that she went out and sought fentanyl got fentanyl and simply took too much. That isn’t what happened.”

She warned “someone very deliberately disguised fentanyl, as a far less lethal, far less dangerous trademark pharmaceutical product and gave it to her and it killed her and that’s a poisoning. And so that message is resonating with so many families out there who are now part of our bereaved family discussion group, who also lost their children under similar circumstances.”

The DEA also has a One Pill Can Kill initiative. According to the Department of Justice, the administration and law enforcement partners seized more than “10.2 million fentanyl pills and approximately 980 pounds of fentanyl powder during the period of May 23 through Sept. 8, 2022.”

“The amount of fentanyl taken off the streets during this surge is equivalent to more than 36 million lethal doses removed from the illegal drug supply,” the DEA press release stated. “Additionally, 338 weapons were seized, including rifles, shotguns, pistols, and hand grenades.”

In Texas,  almost 1,700 Texans lost their lives because of fentanyl.

 

DEA

Of the 390 cases investigated during this period, 51 cases are linked to overdose poisonings and 35 cases link directly to one or both of the primary Mexican cartels responsible for the majority of fentanyl in the United States – the Sinaloa Cartel and the Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG). In addition, 129 investigations are linked to social media platforms, including Snapchat, Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and TikTok. These results build upon the One Pill Can Kill Phase II results announced by DEA Administrator Anne Milgram in December 2021.

You can follow Sara A. Carter on Twitter @SaraCarterDC 

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Guatemala is investigating U.S. NGOs for child trafficking, seeks Texas AG collaboration

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Guatemala’s Attorney General is investigating ongoing criminal claims that a number of American tax payer funded non-governmental organizations (NGOs) operating both inside and outside the United States are complicit  in the ongoing trafficking, abuse and disappearance of children from its nation, according to an official Guatemalan letter obtained by this investigative columnist.

The Guatemalan government is seeking full cooperation from the State of Texas, where the accusations of abuse have been reported, government officials told SaraACarter.com.

A letter from Guatemalan Attorney General María Consuelo Porras was sent to Attorney General Ken Paxton on Saturday. Porras asked Paxton for immediate assistance with investigations into recent criminal reports filed with Guatemala’s Public Ministry alleging that unaccompanied minor children and adolescents being trafficked into the U.S. from Guatemala have allegedly suffered sexual and physical abuse at facilities operated by U.S. tax payer funded NGOs.

The Biden Administration has granted tens of billions of dollars in U.S. tax payer money in the form of grants to NGOs working to house, feed, educate and provide resources to illegal migrants entering the country. The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think-tank in Washington D.C. documented the astonishing cost of an open border to American taxpayers.

Guatemalan Secretary General Angel Pineda with the Public Ministry spoke with  SaraACarter.com Sunday night. He said he is seeking collaboration from Paxton and the state of Texas in this ongoing criminal investigation.

“As a Prosecutor’s Office, Ministerio Publico of Guatemala, have received a criminal complaint that states some criminal actions, which we see with great concern,” Pineda told this investigative columnist.  “Due to the situation that is happening in Texas, regarding different forms of abuses of some Guatemalan children and adolescents, when the institution received that criminal complaint, the institution has started investigations, so it is necessary to work on this matter in an integral way.”

He added “that is why, I have been authorized to ask for the collaboration of prosecutor Paxton so we can work together and protect Guatemalan children, and have sent a letter in that matter. “

Texas Attorney General Paxton could not be reached immediately for comment.

According to sources, the allegations of abuse are currently under investigation and are focused on facilities contracted by NGOs that have been poorly managed, and or have allowed for the sexual assault and physical abuse of children from Guatemala. In other cases, the Guatemalan government is investigating NGOs, some of which are operating in Central America, that are aiding and abetting the child trafficking organizations by supplying the necessary resources to move the unaccompanied children to the United States border without guardians or parental supervision.

“These Guatemalan children have reportedly been placed in shelters and organizations throughout Texas under the guise of providing them with a family environment,” Porras states in the letter. “Disturbingly, there have been reports and documented situations of sexual abuse in these shelters, which is a huge violation of the rights and dignity of these children.”

“The State of Texas bears much of the responsibility for these lost children, who have been transferred to the border and processed migratory (through migration procedures)  in Texas apparently fully aware of this situation,”  the translated letter from Spanish to English states.

In her letter to Paxton, Porras goes on to say, “you know, deficiencies in security and diplomacy related to the border between the United States and Mexico have resulted in a significant increase in drug trafficking, but also a devastating emergence of human trafficking. In relation to the new complaint that has been filed with this institution, a horrifying pattern of the disappearance of children from Guatemala has been brought to our attention, and it has been reported to the Public Ministry that a complex network involving Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) operating within Guatemala, who collaborate with specific entities in the State of Texas, are implicated in the abuse of Guatemalan children when they are away from their parents and do not have someone to protect them.”

This isn’t the first time NGOs have come in the crosshairs of lawmakers for failing to abide by the law or for failing to protect those being trafficked. In February, Paxton announced that his office was suing the Annunciation House — a Catholic NGO that operates “several houses of hospitality” for migrants and refugees in El Paso, Texas; and Ciudad Juarez, Mexico. The NGO is an “entry point” for illegal immigrants being trafficked to the United States.

Paxton stated in February, “the chaos at the southern border has created an environment where NGOs, funded with taxpayer money from the Biden Administration, facilitate astonishing horrors including human smuggling. While the federal government perpetuates the lawlessness destroying this country, my office works day in and day out to hold these organizations responsible for worsening illegal immigration.”

In fact, this year the Office of Inspector General (OIG) began raising concerns about the Department of Health and Human Services placement and safety protocols regarding unaccompanied alien children (UACs).

Lawmakers in the United States highlighted the issues with the UAC program that is administered through the Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR). Within those reports, along with testimony from whistleblowers, numerous allegations of sexual abuse of children and misplaced children by HHS/ORR have surfaced.

Allegations of abuse often occur at contracted facilities according to those sources who testified before Congress. In fact,  even after lawmakers became aware that ORR lost the location of more than 85,000 children in the United States that had been placed into sponsors homes the situation still remains dire, according to sources.

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) statistics, suggest that the number of unaccompanied alien children (UACs) who arrived at the border has swelled from 33,239 in fiscal year 2020 to more than 146,000 in fiscal year 2021 and more than 152,000 in fiscal year 2022. That is roughly a 500 percent increase in the trafficking of unaccompanied children.

In February 2023, The New York Times published an expose on migrant children working brutal jobs across the country, many of which violate child labor laws. At the time the story was written, over 130,000 unaccompanied minors had entered the nation that fiscal year.

In April, 2023 the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Immigration Integrity, Security and Enforcement interviewed HHS whistleblower Tara Lee Rodas. At the time she was detailed with HHS at an Emergency Intake Site in Pomona, California, and told the committee “I thought I was going to help place children in loving homes.”

“Instead, I discovered that children are being trafficked through a sophisticated network that begins with recruiting in their home country, smuggled to the U.S. border, and ends when [Office of Refugee Resettlement] delivers a child to a sponsor — some sponsors are criminals and traffickers and members of Transnational Criminal Organizations,” she said. “Some sponsors view children as commodities and assets to be used for earning income — this is why we are witnessing an explosion of labor trafficking.”

In 2019, I interviewed Guatemalan Attorney General Porras in Guatemala. Her focus then was the ongoing crisis of child trafficking in the region and in her nation. She reiterated that the government of Guatemala’s first priority was its children.

And the increase in the flow of unaccompanied children is shocking. On one particular visit to Guatemala in 2018, with Chris Farrell from Judicial Watch, an investigative nonprofit in Washington D.C., we were briefed on the rescue of seven unaccompanied children under the age of 10 that were to be trafficked into the U.S. for nefarious purposes.  These children were rescued by the Guatemalan government from a trafficking organization operating within a large caravan of people that were were monitoring along the Guatemalan border.

“Our nation’s children are the main priority and many of these children are living in poverty and from regions where they have no resources to protect themselves from these predators,” Porras told me during an interview in Guatemala City.

She reiterated those same sentiments in her letter to Paxton, who is also opening his own investigations into the NGOs operating in the state of Texas.

The criminal complaints addressed in the letter allege that the “non-governmental organizations operating in Guatemala and the State of Texas that may be involved in child trafficking operations are “Save the Children,” “Changing the Way We Care,” the World Childhood Foundation, Arise, and La Unión del Pueblo Entero is concerning. What could be particularly alarming about these organizations is that some of them receive federal funds from American taxpayers. I have been informed that other non-governmental organizations operating in Guatemala and Texas could be accomplices to child trafficking, possibly supporting this trafficking and other issues with unaccompanied children and adolescents traveling, but they have proven unsuccessful in protecting children in Guatemala.”

The NGOs in this letter could not be reached immediately for comment with regard to the ongoing investigations. This column will be updated when and if they respond.

As for Guatemalan officials now investigating these claims, they told this reporter they will utilize all resources to target the traffickers and any NGOs aiding in the trafficking of children.

The letter to Paxton states that the investigation is to “protect the human rights and interests of the inhabitants of the Republic of Guatemala, will spare no effort and exhaust all necessary efforts to locate and criminally prosecute those responsible for this enormous tragedy. Be assured that the Attorney General and Chief of the Public Ministry of the Republic of Guatemala will zealously execute her legal mandate to eradicate this epidemic of child trafficking and to hold those who commit these crimes against humanity accountable.”

Porras asked that Paxton’s office contact Guatemalan officials to coordinate in the investigation.

You can follow Sara A Carter on X @SaraCarterDC and on Truth @SaraCarterOfficial

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