Wicker, Colleagues Fight Fentanyl Crisis

Senators Introduce FEND Off Fentanyl Act

April 28, 2023

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, this week joined Armed Services Chairman Jack Reed, D-R.I., and the leaders of the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs, Chairman Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, and Ranking Member Tim Scott, R-S.C., in introducing the Fentanyl Eradication and Narcotics Deterrence (FEND) Off Fentanyl Act.

This sanctions and anti-money laundering bill is aimed at combatting the country’s fentanyl crisis by targeting the illicit fentanyl supply chain, from the chemical suppliers in China to the cartels that traffic the drugs in from Mexico. By strengthening current law and directing the Treasury Department to target, sanction, and block the financial assets of transnational criminal organizations, the FEND Off Fentanyl Act aims to stop the flow of deadly fentanyl into the U.S. by choking off the income source of those who traffic in synthetic opioids.

“Tens of thousands of Americans are dying each year from fentanyl that has been trafficked into this country by Mexican cartels and manufactured using materials from Communist China,” Wicker said. “This measure would directly target the criminals and organizations that are empowering the fentanyl trade and endangering our national security.”

The United States is facing the worst drug crisis in history. In 2021, nearly 107,000 Americans died from an overdose, and 65% of overdose deaths were caused by fentanyl. Last year, the Drug Enforcement Administration seized over 379 million deadly doses of fentanyl - enough to supply a lethal dose to every American.

Wicker joined Senate colleagues to introduce multiple measures which would increase support for border security, while also upping punishment for fentanyl traffickers. Wicker visited the southern border in March and authored an op-ed in the Clarion Ledger calling for a border security-focused plan to take on the growing damage fentanyl has done to Mississippi communities.