Regional News

Federal Investigators Warn Of Dangerous "Rainbow Fentanyl"

PORTLAND, OR -- Federal drug investigators are joining local law enforcement to issue urgent warnings about rainbow fentanyl. "It’s a real crisis that we’re facing," says Steve Mygrant, Chief of the Narcotics and Criminal Enterprises Unit for the US Attorney's Office in Oregon, "I would say an unprecedented one, when it comes to drug abuse." 

He’s concerned the new brightly colored “rainbow fentanyl” will lead to even more overdose deaths, especially in young people, under the age of 25, now heading back to high school and college. "Drug trafficking organizations are specifically marketing to a younger crowd who have lower tolerances and less experience with an incredibly powerful drug," he says.

Nationwide, there were around 107,000 fatal drug overdoses, last year; more than three quarters were caused by synthetic opioids - primarily fentanyl.

Mygrant says no community is immune, "This is an extremely addictive drug and extremely potent. We’ve seen a dramatic rise in the number of overdose deaths in the state of Oregon, but that doesn’t seem to deter. And the Fentanyl itself has become much less expensive over the last three years."

He says rainbow fentanyl comes in various forms and can look like sidewalk chalk or even candy. 

According to Mygrant, federal agencies are ramping up fentanyl-related prosecutions, but they also need the public to be aware of its dangers. 


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