© 2024 Connecticut Public

FCC Public Inspection Files:
WPKT · WRLI-FM · WEDW-FM · Public Files Contact
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

Murphy calls for investments in technology, diplomacy to curb drug and gun trafficking

"The Faces of Fentanyl" wall, which displays photos of Americans who died from a fentanyl overdose, at the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, on July 13, 2022. - America's opioid crisis has reached catastrophic proportions, with over 80,000 people dying of opioid overdoses last year, most of them due to illicit synthetics such as fentanyl -- more than seven times the number a decade ago. "This is the most dangerous epidemic that weve seen," said Ray Donovan, chief of operations at the US Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA). "Fentanyl is not like any other illicit narcotic, its that deadly instantaneously." (Photo by Agnes BUN / AFP) (Photo by AGNES BUN/AFP via Getty Images)
AGNES BUN/AFP via Getty Images
"The Faces of Fentanyl" wall, as of July 13, 2022, displays photos of Americans who died from a fentanyl overdose. It's at the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) headquarters in Arlington, Virginia.

U.S. Sen, Chris Murphy from Connecticut recently returned from a visit to Colombia and Mexico, where he discussed the "vicious cycle" of drug and weapons trafficking across the U.S.–Mexico border.

“There is a vicious cycle of guns moving south and drugs moving north,” Murphy said.

Drug overdoses are the leading cause of accidental death in Connecticut, and 86% of overdoses involve fentanyl, a synthetic opioid.

Murphy, who chairs the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Homeland Security, said that Congress has authorized $700 million for new technology to help identify fentanyl at the border but that only 10% of it has been used. He added that mostof the fentanyl seized by the U.S. government arrives at the border through legal ports of entry.

He also called on the Biden administration to work with the Chinese government to crack down on the illegal export of ingredients used to produce fentanyl.

Murphy said he plans to propose additional investment in X-ray and thermal scanning technology that could help detect drugs and firearms in vehicles moving south. Experts say that a large portion of the firearms in Mexico come from the United States.

“Physical inspections were never going to be the solution,” Murphy said. “If you inspected rigorously every single car or truck that shows up at the border, you would stop commerce between the United States and Mexico. But the non-intrusive inspections allow you to inspect every single vehicle while allowing traffic to move relatively freely.”

Stand up for civility

This news story is funded in large part by Connecticut Public’s Members — listeners, viewers, and readers like you who value fact-based journalism and trustworthy information.

We hope their support inspires you to donate so that we can continue telling stories that inform, educate, and inspire you and your neighbors. As a community-supported public media service, Connecticut Public has relied on donor support for more than 50 years.

Your donation today will allow us to continue this work on your behalf. Give today at any amount and join the 50,000 members who are building a better—and more civil—Connecticut to live, work, and play.

Related Content