Statewide warning about fentanyl-laced pills that have already killed 1

The pills appear like legal oxycodone, but contain the deadly synthetic opioid.
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fentanyl pill

A statewide alert has been issued warning Minnesotans of a batch of oxycodone pills that are laced with fentanyl.

Referred to as "Mexican Oxy," the pills have been linked to the overdose death of 38-year-old Beth Leann Roulet, who was found at her Mankato home on Tuesday.

Investigators found small, light-blue colored pills at the scene with "M" on one side and the number 30 on the other.

Further tests found that the pills, which had been marked as "legitimately manufactured oxycodone," actually contained fentanyl.

The pills are believed to originate in Mexico and have been linked to fatal overdose all over the country, though Tuesday's OD is the first in Minnesota.

"Counterfeit opioid drugs are designed to look like the real thing,” said Drew Evans, of the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension Superintendent.

"Your supplier has no idea which dose would kill you, and neither will you. There is no safe dose."

Statewide gang and drug coordinator Brian Marquart says that mid to high-level drug dealers are being targeted to crack down on the proliferation of the pills.

Fentanyl is a painkiller than is 50 times more potent than heroin.

In 2017, it was behind 91 percent of the overdose deaths linked to opioids in Minnesota.

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