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Man accused of smuggling 1.7 pounds of fentanyl in his stomach

Narcotics investigators from the Wake County Sheriff's Office arrested a man and accused him of carrying 1.7 pounds of fentanyl in his stomach. Allegedly, the man swallowed packets of this powerful drug additive before boarding his flight to the Raleigh-Durham International Airport. The 29-year-old man departed from Orlando, Florida, just hours before his arrest.

After being apprehended by authorities, they transported him to WakeMed Hospital and booked him on two counts of opioid trafficking. Fentanyl is a common additive used in combination with the drug morphine to make extra-strong heroin, which makes the heroin more potent by 50 to 100 times.

Authorities took the man to the hospital because if the packets in his system broke open, he would suffer serious medical consequences from ingesting fentanyl. The man claimed to have eaten 65 packets in total, and the fentanyl inside was valued at approximately $115,000.

Drug enforcement authorities is especially concerned with fentanyl because it can create a fatal combination when mixed with heroin. In this man's case, if he is convicted of the offense of trafficking fentanyl, he could be sentenced to between 225 and 282 months in prison. As of last reports, the man was being held on bail of $2 million in the Wake County Detention Center.

North Carolina residents accused of any drug offense will have the right to legal representation and a criminal defense. No matter what evidence is involved, those accused of crimes may be able to achieve some advantages during their criminal trial proceedings via different criminal defense strategies. For example, they might be able to reach a plea deal with the prosecution in which they plead guilty to one or more offenses in exchange for a dramatically reduced punishment. In other cases, they might be able to get certain charges dropped or reduced.

Source: newsobserver.com, "Man charged with carrying 1.7 pounds of fentanyl in his stomach on flight to RDU," Ron Gallagher, April 13, 2017

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