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US files charges against China-based manufacturing companies that make fentanyl

This is the first time that the United States has taken legal action against fentanyl producers.

Published: June 24, 2023 2:43pm

The Department of Justice filed charges on Friday against four Chinese chemical manufacturing companies and eight people over allegations that they illegally trafficked chemicals used to make fentanyl.

This is the first time that the United States has taken legal action against fentanyl producers, according to Reuters.

Earlier this month, Secretary of State Antony Blinken visited China. He later stated that Washington needs much greater Chinese cooperation to stem the flow of fentanyl.

China's foreign ministry came out with a statement on Saturday, saying that the U.S. needs to stop using "fentanyl-related pretexts" to sanction and go after Chinese companies.

"China urges the U.S. side to stop dumping blame and to stop smear attacks on China," the ministry said in a statement, according to Reuters. 

Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco emphasized the importance of going after the drug that has killed hundreds of thousands of young people in the U.S.

"Fentanyl poses a singular threat, not only because the smallest doses can be lethal, but because fentanyl does not occur in nature," Monaco said. "It is entirely man-made."

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