After turning a blind eye to its out-of-control southern border crisis, the genesis of the COVID global disaster, and the plight of Uyghurs in western China, Team Biden has finally moved on the fentanyl crisis.
The Treasury Department on Friday announced sanctions targeting two Chinese companies and four nationals that Treasury alleges are “supplying precursor chemicals to drug cartels in Mexico for the production of illicit fentanyl intended for US markets”.
This after the Biden Administration took no discernible action since January 2021 as tens of thousands of Americans overdosed.
The Treasury Department leveled sanctions against Wuhan Shuokang Biological Technology Co., Ltd., Suzhou Xiaoli Pharmatech Co., Ltd., Yao Huatao, Wu Yaqin, Wu Yonghao, and Wang Hongfei.
Treasury said the companies and individuals are “part of a whole-of-government effort to counter the global threat posed by the trafficking of illicit drugs into the United States that is causing the deaths of tens of thousands of Americans annually, as well as countless more non-fatal overdoses”.
The communist government in Beijing was quick to push back against the US sanctions.
“China, in the spirit of humanitarianism, has been trying to help the U.S. as best it can”, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Wang Wenbin said during a news briefing, arguing that moves from the US to impose sanctions “seriously undermines” bilateral cooperation between the two countries over drug control.
Wang said China has lodged a complaint with Washington over the sanctions.
According to the Department of Justice, fentanyl is the leading cause of death for Americans ages 18 to 49.
Shortly after the Treasury sanctions were announced, the DOJ announced indictments against members of the Sinaloa Cartel, which authorities are calling “the largest, most violent, and most prolific fentanyl trafficking operation in the world”.
Top lieutenants of the Sinaloa Cartel, the sons of infamous drug lord Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán, who are collectively known as the Chapitos, are accused of smuggling significant quantities of drugs through Mexico and into the United States, as well as having their security forces torture and kill their victims.
Attorney General Merrick Garland said on Friday that the precursor chemicals used to manufacture fentanyl, which is 50 times more potent than heroin, come from Chinese chemical and pharmaceutical companies.
“The United States government is using every tool at its disposal to combat the fentanyl epidemic. The PRC government must stop the unchecked flow of fentanyl precursor chemicals that are coming out of China”, Garland said.
“Earlier this morning, the Treasury Department announced sanctions against two Chinese companies and five related individuals for their roles in the sale of fentanyl precursor chemicals from China to the Sinaloa Cartel. Four of those individuals are defendants in this case”.
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