Federal prosecutors crack down on suppliers who fuel opioid addi - CBS46 News

Federal prosecutors crack down on suppliers who fuel opioid addiction

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Source: WGCL Source: WGCL

Federal prosecutors are taking their efforts of combating the opioid crisis up a notch and it includes cracking down on those who are fueling the addiction.

BJak Pak, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia, tells CBS46 he is launching Operation SCOPE, which stands for Strategically Combating Opioids through Prosecution and Enforcement.

"Part of the SCOPE initiative is to work backwards from the overdose deaths and identifying the distributors and working up," said Pak.

His office is cracking down in a few ways including going after those who are over-prescribing and over-dispensing pain medication.

"We are looking at prosecuting folks like doctors, pharmacists and even hospitals, methadone clinics that are going beyond what's medically necessary." said Pak.

He said they are using data to monitor who is prescribing significantly more pain medication than others and looking into whether a crime is being committed.

"As we succeed in cracking down and limiting the supply of painkillers in the market, we're pushing the addicts into different types of drugs," said Pak.

With drugs like heroin and Fentanyl also in demand, investigators are also trying to track who is supplying those. 

The initiative includes cyber investigations targeting the dark web, where synthetic fentanyl is sold, and a focus on Mexican cartels bringing in drugs.

Pak hopes to continue to educate the public on opioid abuse.

He said, "People are now just looking at this problem as a public health issue.”

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