‘Mexican Oxy, also known as counterfeit oxycodone, has been circulating throughout the New Jersey area. This fake prescription drug may be coming to other states soon.
Lawmakers and pharmaceutical companies have reformulated oxycodone to make abusing the drug more difficult. The reformulation has made injecting oxycodone more challenging Drug dealers increase their profits by mixing the more expensive oxycodone with relatively cheap heroin.
Illegal drug makers have created heroin in a pill form, designed to look like the prescription painkiller oxycodone. The tablets contain heroin and crushed opiates. Consumers ingest the pills by swallowing them or by crushing and injecting the tablets.
The buyer thinks he is purchasing prescription oxycodone but ends up with heroin, which is much more addictive than oxycodone. The consumer can become addicted quite quickly, sometimes in just a few weeks of use. The intense rapid addiction turns out to be an excellent business for the seller, who can now profit from scores of newly addicted customers.
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As a bonus, heroin is also much easier to sell in pill form than as a powder for the drug dealer. Pills fit neatly into prescription drug containers, making the drug easier to store and dispense for sale. Packing drugs into pill form also makes heroin look like oxycodone.
The Risks of Street Drugs
One of the most significant drawbacks of buying drugs without a prescription, aside from the apparent criminality, is that dosages and contents vary – a pill might be so weak that it does not get the consumer high, or it may be so strong that it kills the user. There is no way for the consumer to know what the pill contains simply by looking at it.
Law enforcement officers have not yet determined if the pills are being manufactured in the United States. Still, there is anecdotal evidence that the fake oxycodone pills are coming north out of Mexico. “We believe that the drug entered the country through New Mexico taken to California and then to New York. They go in circles. There is so much money involved that it is worth the effort of transiting safer routes. Even if they lose a significant amount on the road, there is much more,” said Bridget Brennan, Special Narcotics Prosecutor for the City of New York.
After struggling with oxycodone addiction problems for years, areas like Cherry Hill and Burlington County have to deal with M30 consequences. In these New Jersey locations, the counterfeit oxycodone tablets are a speckled, bluish-green color with an “M” inside a box stamped on the front and the number 30 on the back. The pills are slightly larger than are their legal counterparts, and they deliver a much stronger dose of opiates.
New Jersey, like most states in the US it has been struggling with a rising heroin problem. It is hard to know precisely how widespread the drug abuse problem is, but in 2013, more than 33,000 people in that state sought treatment for heroin and other opioid drugs. That year, at least 557 people died from opiate overdose in that state.
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