GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — An Ohio woman was arrested for allegedly transporting a massive cache of fentanyl from the Grand Rapids area to metro Detroit.
The Drug Enforcement Administration said investigators tracked the delivery of 20 kilograms of fentanyl, which is around 44 pounds, after developing intelligence during an ongoing investigation in Kent County.
On Wednesday, suspects believed to have connections to a Mexican cartel sent the woman to deliver to the Detroit area, according to the DEA news release.
Police from federal, state and local agencies stopped the vehicle in metro Detroit and seized approximately 20 kilograms of fentanyl and one firearm.
The woman from Ohio was taken into custody, but agents are not releasing her name due to the ongoing investigation. They also declined to share details about the Grand Rapids connection.
The DEA believes the fentanyl was made in Mexico. Drug cartels in Mexico, using chemicals mainly from China, are responsible for most fentanyl being trafficked in the United States, according to the DEA.
“The precursors (chemicals) are coming in from China mostly,” said Orville Greene, special agent in charge of the DEA’s Detroit field office. “From China, they go into Mexico, and in Mexico the precursors are processed into the finished product, powder or pill form, and then smuggled across the southwest border … Then, it gets shot out across the country from California, but also from Texas, Arizona, all along the western and southwest border.”
Greene, talking to News 8 by Zoom Friday morning, said the drugs are then transported via major highways throughout the United States, including interstates 94 and 75.
On March 7, Michigan State Police seized four kilos of fentanyl after a traffic stop on I-94 near Paw Paw.
— News 8’s Susan Samples contributed to this report.