Authorities in Alaska have announced a spate of recent seizures of narcotics in Southcentral and Southeast Alaska.
Alaska State Troopers say two separate drug busts this week yielded 4,700 counterfeit oxycodone pills stamped M30 containing the powerful synthetic opioid fentanyl.
In one case, investigators say they were tipped off on Wednesday about a package bound for the Prince of Wales Island community of Craig. Members of the regional Southeast Alaska Cities Against Drugs Task Force tracked the package down at a home in the nearby community of Klawock.
Police arrested three Prince of Wales Island residents in connection with the bust, which reportedly turned up 2,000 counterfeit fentanyl pills and a pound of crystal methamphetamine. Police estimate the value of the drugs seized in the Prince of Wales Island haul at $267,900.
In a separate case, investigators with the interagency Anchorage Airport Interdiction Team reportedly seized 2,700 fentanyl-laced pills from a package at a commercial shipping facility in Anchorage. Investigators say they arrested two people at a Wasilla home thought to be connected to the package on Tuesday, along with a third who was wanted in California on unrelated charges. Police say the pills are worth roughly $100,000 at Mat-Su prices, substantially less than the street value on Prince of Wales Island.
State troopers say the fentanyl busts are among the largest in Alaska history.
In a third case announced by Juneau police on Wednesday, authorities arrested two Washington state residents at the city’s airport on Tuesday that they say were carrying heroin, fentanyl and pills.
More than 250 Alaskans died of drug overdoses in the 12 months ending November 2021, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That’s up by more than 80% from the previous year. Roughly four out of five of the overdose deaths were attributed to opioids like heroin and fentanyl.