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Kilo of fentanyl found on children’s mats at Bronx daycare, 4 children overdosed, 1 year old boy dies

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Two Bronx daycare employees have been charged by federal prosecutors after fentanyl was found on top of children’s mats. The drug findings were connected to the poisoning of at least four children, all younger than 3 years-old. Tragically, one of the children, a one year old boy, died.

The two adults were charged with narcotics possession with intent to distribute resulting in death and conspiracy to distribute narcotics resulting in death.”This case reflects every parent’s worst nightmare,” New York Police Department Commissioner Edward Caban said in a statement. “These alleged drug traffickers brazenly went about their illicit business in one of the most ill-conceived locations imaginable, but they will be held accountable.”

The Center Square reports:

Prosecutors alleged that over the summer, Mendez and Acevedo Brito and others conspired to distribute fentanyl, including at a children’s daycare center in the Bronx. The complaint alleges the two “maintained large quantities of fentanyl, including a kilogram of fentanyl stored on top of children’s playmats.”

On Sept. 15, four children, all younger than 3 years old, appear to have experienced the effects of poisoning from exposure to fentanyl.

Before Mendez called 911 to summon medical assistance for the children, she called another person, referred to as an unnamed co-conspirator in the complaint. That person came to the daycare, stayed for about two minutes and then left out a back alleyway carrying two shopping bags. This happened while the children were unresponsive.

“Tragedy doesn’t begin to describe the events that took place at Divino Niño Daycare,” said Special Agent in Charge Frank Tarentino III of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s New York Field Division. “This death and drug poisonings are every parent’s worst nightmare and clearly define the danger fentanyl poses to every New Yorker.”

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Immigration

$18 million dollars’ worth of methamphetamine hidden within a shipment of squash

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U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers working at the Otay Mesa Commercial Facility discovered $18 million dollars’ worth of methamphetamine hidden within a shipment of squash.

Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) revealed in a press release on Monday, at approximately 6:47 a.m.,that CBP officers encountered a 44-year-old male driving a commercial tractor-trailer with a shipment manifested for squash. The driver, a valid border crossing card holder, was referred for further examination by CBP officers along with the tractor-trailer and shipment.

Non-intrusive scanning technology was utilized to conduct a full scan of the tractor trailer which showed irregularities and CBP officers requested a CBP human and narcotics detection canine. The canine team responded and alerted officers to the presence of narcotics.

A total of 1,419 packages concealed within the shipment of squash was discovered and extracted. The narcotics were tested and identified as methamphetamine with a total weight of 11,469 pounds with an estimated street value of $18,350,400.

“Our officers’ commitment to duty, excellence, and the safety of our nation is truly commendable. These results serve as an outstanding display of effectiveness in thwarting the illegal importation of narcotics,” stated Rosa E. Hernandez, Otay Mesa Area Port Director. “Their exceptional efforts truly embody the highest standards of service.”

The seizures are part of Operation Apollo, a holistic counter-fentanyl effort that began on October 26, 2023 in southern California, and expanded to Arizona on April 10, 2024, the CBP release reveals. Operation Apollo focuses on intelligence collection and partnerships, and utilizes local CBP field assets augmented by federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial partners to boost resources, increase collaboration, and target the smuggling of fentanyl into the United States.

The CDC states that more than 150 people die every day from drug overdoses related to synthetic opioids derived from fentanyl.

 

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