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China’s involvement in fentanyl crisis: making, manufacturing and exporting to Mexico, drug cartels

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A senior legal research fellow in the Meese Center for Legal and Judicial Studies at The Heritage Foundation and expert on criminal justice policy, drug policy, and regulatory policy explains just how deep China’s involvement in the fentanyl crisis runs.

“China is involved in at least three different ways in fentanyl making, manufacturing, exporting fentanyl to Mexico either directly or indirectly, and providing the Mexican cartels with advice on how best to produce,” explained Paul J. Larkin to Foreign Desk News.

Small and mid-level workers in Chinese chemical and pharmaceutical industries appear to be the main perpetrators in providing the resources and knowledge for Mexican drug cartels; these workers are well connected with members of the Communist Chinese Party.

“China is not only going to purchase the groceries, but it is also preparing the recipes for the drug cartel cook to use,” Larkin told The Foreign Desk.

“Beijing participates in the money laundering aspect of drug trafficking. The money that the cartels send to China from their drug trade, Beijing then launders it. They certainly remain involved in the fentanyl problem that the US has,” Larkin added.

Foreign Desk News reports:

Chinese criminal syndicates have aided in the fentanyl crisis facing no repercussions from Beijing due to their political capital with Chinese authorities and government officials and the promotion of Beijing’s political, military, and economic goals.

…The drug operations conducted by several Chinese criminal actors include small-family-based groups to businesses that engage in highly diverse legal trade with organized crime groups.

…Chinese money laundering brokers have successfully worked around American and Mexican banking systems through avenues like trade-based laundering, protected and unprotected marine products and wood, real estate, cryptocurrencies, casinos, and bulk cash.

According to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), in 2021, around 106,699 Americans died from fentanyl, growing in 2022, with the death toll being around 107,477, according to the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. Experts say that the consumption of fentanyl was through fake prescription pills, heroin, methamphetamine, and cocaine.

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China

New documents show China trying to establish ‘satellite state’ in Caribbean

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China has been “exploiting a fragile security environment and taking advantage of the region’s need for economic investment to gain influence and advance its malign agenda” in a move that challenges U.S. hegemony in the Americas, U.S. Southern Command Comm. General Laura Richardson recently told Congress in written testimony.

The Caribbean island nation of Antigua and Barbuda, located about 220 miles from the U.S. Virgin Islands, is where China is planning to establish a special Chinese-run economic zone, according to documents reviewed by Newsweek

Just The News  reports that per the documents, the area will have its own customs and immigration facilities, a shipping port and it will even issue passports. China will also establish different kinds of businesses that will specialize in things from facial surgery to virology, the latter of which is closely associated with the research in Wuhan that is the suspected source of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A spokesperson for SOUTHCOM said that the U.S. military is “aware that China may use its commercial and diplomatic presence for military purposes. In Asia, Africa and the Middle East, China has already abused commercial agreements at host-country ports for military aims; our concern is they may do the same in this region.”

More than two-thirds of the 31 nations under SOUTHCOM’s responsibility have signed onto China’s belt-and-road initiative, which is Beijing’s program to lend money to developing nations to use for infrastructure projects, according to Just The News.

Several nations have had problems with repaying such loans, resulting in Beijing seizing the country’s assets. For example, Sri Lanka struggled to pay back Beijing in 2017 and instead signed off the rights to a strategic port, according to Foreign Policy.

Rep. Eric Burlison, R-Mo., a member of the House Oversight Committee proving China’s incursion inside the U.S. sphere of influence, told Just the News on Monday night that Beijing’s aggression in the Caribbean reminded him of the Soviet’s intervention in Fidel Castro’s Cuba more than a half century earlier.

“It reminds me of Russia’s involvement in Cuba, just 220 miles off the shore of the US Virgin Islands. We have Antigua. It used to be considered the United States back yard. Unfortunately, today, it’s China’s front yard,” Burlison told the “Just the News, No Noise television show. “And China has used the united front to enter into loan agreements and contracts to create trade zones within Antigua in order to gain a foothold into the Caribbean.”

“And this is just part of their efforts around the globe, whether it’s in African countries or Laos. They’re they’re creating a network to try to undermine the U.S. dollar and try to end run around some of our tariffs and other programs,” he warned.

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