DEA opioid enforcement team coming to Cincinnati

The teams will be comprised of DEA special agents and state and local task force officers.

The two enforcement teams are among six that the agency is forming across the U.S.to combat an opioid epidemic that claimed roughly 34,500 lives past year.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer called on the agency to send one of the teams to NY back in June.

The federal government will unleash six new enforcement teams to help combat the heroin and fentanyl epidemic sweeping through the USA, the Drug Enforcement Administration said Friday.

The New York DEA field division has identified New York City as a major distribution hub for heroin mills that use Kennedy Airport as an entry point to more easily access the greater Northeast region, he added. In Cuyahoga County, heroin and fentanyl killed more people previous year than homicides, suicides and vehicle crashes.

President Donald Trump declared the opioid epidemic a public health emergency on Thursday and stressed how necessary it was to further enforcement on heroin and fentanyl.

Schumer earlier this year helped secure $12.5 million in federal funding for the creation of new enforcement groups specifically dedicated to counteracting heroin and fentanyl trafficking. The teams' investigations will not be limited to the geographic areas near those cities, the agency said.

The agency said in a news release on Friday, Oct. 27, that the teams will be based in Cleveland; Cincinnati; New Bedford, Mass.; Charleston, W.Va.; Raleigh, N.C.; and Long Island, N.Y. It described those six places as "communities facing significant challenges with heroin and fentanyl".

About 1,300 people died of overdoses past year in the city.

"The abuse of controlled prescription drugs is inextricably linked with the threat the United States faces from the trafficking of heroin, fentanyl and fentanyl analogues", the DEA said in a press release.

More than twice the number of people who were murdered or killed in auto wrecks - combined.

The National Center for Health Studies found that the number of deaths caused by opioids were 2.5 times the rate in 1999.

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