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tv   After Words Ben Westhoff Fentanyl Inc.  CSPAN  October 1, 2019 1:50am-2:38am EDT

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>> it is great to be with you and thank you for all your effort. what an incredible four years you spent on fentanyl ink so let's dive right in. my interest is in this is that my company in new hampshire, i those working together but we
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have been hit very hard in our state. 471 deaths last year but the mix is changing. as you write about fentanyl mixed with cocaine, mixed with methamphetamines, so i just want to start off with the big picture that what got you into this? what made you want to spend four years of your life on this deep dive and how did you keep going? >> i had a friend who died from fentanyl in 2010 before people were talking about it and before i knew what it was. but it wasn't until four years ago, i was a music journalist primarily in doing a report so
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electronic, music but then the death is blamed on ecstasy. so then i find out almost all of it. >> as it makes with other chemicals? >> exactly almost there is no true ecstasy it's all the new chemicals perk i wanted to find out what these drugs were. and it turns out, there are hundreds of new drugs i have never heard of and most people have never heard of, all synthetic and made that i had
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no idea is that china is where new drugs were made in. >> that to understand where it came from. you do such a fascinating job in your book that really your book describes the infrastructure that developed echo one of the hearings we had.
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>> the first thing i learned is buying drugs online is incredibly easy and you don't even have to go on to the dark web. i started to google the names like fentanyl and found chinese labs selling them at all i did was send them an e-mail and pretending to be a drug buyer with a fake e-mail address and asked if i was ever in china but what i found was shocking. but it wasn't like that environment at all but may be
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a mexican or colombian cartel for once i learned they are legitimate businesses and staying one modern molecule ahead so describe the process. >> exactly. when it comes to fentanyl that is banned in the us, china so whenever somebody else publishes a drug so they were
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operating within the law and that's only changed recently in may but all those analogs and everything even before they were ever invented. >> so to help to understand for the listeners, people here in the united states by the precursor chemicals to make fentanyl and then they are mixing the ingredients before they sell it in the retail capacity. that you keep having these visuals you could understand and one was the coffee grinder and using that to mix the substances but then it seemed
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that part of the risk, can you help people to understand the lethality so there are those that could be lethal overdose but then to figure out what the mix is. >> yes. that is an important point because hera when it is grown from the poppy and a natural plant. but fentanyl is made in a lab and it is 50 times stronger. so drug dealers will not use peer heroine, they will cut it with fentanyl because it's their it's a much more cheaper and powerful but the problem is that the way they mix them together, like you said, it is
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not precise or scientific at all. so these dealers in st. loui st. louis, said they would mix the heroin in the fentanyl and that's why so many people are dying from fentanyl. >> one of those comments you were quoting people because if you think of this as a product that is literally killing the purchasers of the product that doesn't sound like a very good business model that you quoted people as saying that they find out about a death and
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then they want to get that batch because it stronger. so help us to understand. is at the level of addiction that is similar to take a step? or did you get more behind talkinto the users and the high they are chasing quick. >> many long time heroin users it just gets them back to baseline. but unfortunately what happens is when someone overdoses that another addicted user hears about that, they don't say have to stay away from that then they say this must be a really powerful batch. i want that.
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>> for that euphoria. >> exactly. that's very unfortunate aspect of this. >> and it is hard to get your brain around certainly for policy makers, part but how people are responding. the other part that was fascinating was your take on the war on drugs and going back to the history of that with president nixon and reagan and nancy reagan with just say no. talk about that a little bit. what is your impression but
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unfortunately where we are at right now is that fentanyl is killing more americans every year than any drug ever. so we have been to the crack academic - - epidemic.
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good evening, everybody. can you hear me okay? my name is jonathan i'm the deputy director of the event of politics and prose. thank you all for coming out tonight. if you haven't already, picked up a calendar full of the rest of our

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