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Shocking zombified tranq addicts sway on sidewalk in Philadelphia

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Tranq dope combines fentanyl, a synthetic opioid drug, with xylazine or “tranq”, a strong non-opioid tranquiliser used to sedate horses, deer and other large animals. It was first detected by drug authorities in the early 2000s in Puerto Rico and, in the years since, circulated there and in limited areas within the American north-east, such as Philadelphia. But the drug has now been detected in nearly every state in the country and, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration (dea), is probably being mixed by local dealers.

Xylazine can be bought for as little as $6 per kilogram on Chinese websites, so illicit drug suppliers can maximise their profits by using it to bulk up their more expensive fentanyl, supplied mostly by Mexican drug cartels. Many end users will not know whether they are buying fentanyl or tranq dope, though it is becoming increasingly risky to assume that the former has not been cut with xylazine. In March the dea said that almost a quarter of American fentanyl powder contained it. In 2021 the proportion was above 90% in Philadelphia.



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      Government causes problems to justify its own existence. And this is just another example.

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