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Mexican drug cartels are taking advantage of the chaotic influx of migrants at the US southern border to smuggle thousands of pounds of deadly fentanyl into the country, experts say.

“Border patrol agents are too busy dealing with the influx of migrants, and are not really focused on looking for fentanyl,” Robert Almonte, a Texas-based security consultant and former deputy chief of the El Paso Police Department, told The Post. “Border agents are not getting the support they need from the federal government to stop the flow of fentanyl, which is killing thousands of Americans.”

More than 90 percent of the 10,000 pounds of fentanyl seized in fiscal 2021 occurred at legal border entry points in California and Arizona –—areas where roughly 30 percent of migrants are entering the US, according to CBP statistics.

Meanwhile, In areas like New Mexico and Texas, where border agents are overwhelmed with nearly 70 percent of migrant entries, there have been fewer seizures — less than 5 percent — of the deadly synthetic opioid, experts told The Post.

The US border with Mexico, at 1,900 miles, is targeted by drug traffickers, who are flooding the country with fentanyl, leading to nearly 108,000 overdose deaths last year.
The US border with Mexico, at 1,900 miles, is targeted by drug traffickers, who are flooding the country with fentanyl, leading to nearly 108,000 overdose deaths last year.
Getty Images

So far this year, of the more than 1.2 million migrant “encounters” along the length of the 1,900-mile border with Mexico, more than 732,000 took place in the southwest border sectors that comprise El Paso, Rio Grande Valley, Del Rio and Laredo, according to CBP statistics.

Fentanyl is largely being produced by the Sinaloa Cartel, which was controlled by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman before he was sentenced to life in prison in Brooklyn federal court for murder and drug trafficking in 2019. Unlike cocaine or marijuana, the synthetic opioid is relatively cheap to manufacture, with Mexican labs operating around the clock and using precursor chemicals imported from China, according to the Drug Enforcement Administration.

In addition to producing fentanyl in pill form, the opioid is being added to other drugs, such as heroin and cocaine, to increase their potency.

The Sinaloa Cartel, once headed by Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman (above), is the top producer of fentanyl.
The Sinaloa Cartel, once headed by Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman (above), is the top producer of fentanyl.
Bloomberg via Getty Images

Fentanyl has been a major factor in the rise of overdose deaths in the US over the last few years. Last year, there were nearly 108,000 overdose deaths in the US, according to statistics compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“We’re losing more people to fentanyl overdoes than guns, suicides and traffic accidents combined,” Almonte told The Post. “This is a crisis. I get mad because I don’t think people get mad enough about what’s happening.”

In the late 1980s and 1990s when the smuggling of cocaine was at an all-time high across the southern border, federal authorities “put a chokehold” on the flow by inspecting every vehicle that came across the border, Almonte said. “Right now, border agents aren’t getting the support, they’re not getting the canine units and they’re not getting the personnel to put more eyes on the problem.”

Mexican drug gangs "will stop at nothing to get fentanyl into the United States," a DEA spokeswoman told CBS.  
Mexican drug gangs “will stop at nothing to get fentanyl into the United States,” a DEA spokeswoman told CBS.  
Getty Images

Most of the fentanyl that makes its way into the US from Mexico is transported via both commercial and private vehicles through frontier checkpoints in California and Arizona, according to CBP statistics. Authorities have found the drugs stashed in the cargo of commercial trucks and tucked into the door panels of private vehicles. They have also found fentanyl strapped to or inside the bodies of pedestrians, crossing the border.

Traffickers regularly transport fentanyl using “backpackers” — Mexican couriers who race across the border and deposit knapsacks laden with the opioid at a predetermined location on the US side, or who hook up with traffickers on the US side that then transport the fentanyl across the country.

“I can say with 100% assurance that the criminal drug cartels in Mexico will stop at nothing to get fentanyl into the United States,” a DEA spokeswoman told CBS last month. 

This stash of plastic-wrapped fentanyl pills was found in the body of a woman near the El Paso border last September, agents said.
This stash of plastic-wrapped fentanyl pills was found in the body of a woman near the El Paso border last September, agents said.

Last year, drug sniffing dogs in the El Paso sector found fentanyl strapped to a 30-year-old man’s groin area. In September, border agents in the same sector also stopped a 48-year-old woman who “presented herself for inspection when a CBP officer noticed travel anomalies and nervous behavior,” reads a CBP press release. Upon a secondary inspection, the woman admitted that she was concealing narcotics “within her vaginal cavity.”

In March, an Arizona woman was sentenced to five years in prison for smuggling fentanyl and heroin into the US from Mexico. Michelle Krystal Mendez, 36, was arrested in November 2020 after a CBP canine patrol stopped in front of her vehicle at the border crossing in Nogales. Authorities found nearly five pounds of fentanyl and two pounds of heroin “carefully hidden” inside the battery compartment under the hood of Mendez’s car, according to a CBP statement.

On Wednesday, US Customs and Border Protection officers seized nearly $340,000 worth of fentanyl — more than 22 pounds — at the Hidalgo International Bridge in southern Texas according to a CBP statement.

The flow of migrants into the US has reportedly left border agents overwhelmed.
The flow of migrants into the US has reportedly left border agents overwhelmed.
REUTERS

Despite that seizure at one of the busiest migrant border crossings, Almonte and others believe that fentanyl trafficking in the region will remain largely undetected because border agents are increasingly overwhelmed with a surge of migrants, and because Mexican law enforcement is doing little to crack down on both the flow of both migrants and drugs.

This week, more than 15,000 migrants were gathering in southern Mexico as they prepared to make their way to the US border.

Over the last year, Chinese criminal gangs have also started working hand in hand with the Mexican cartels, operating behind shell companies that offer legitimate services such as computer maintenance and veterinary services, according to a report.

Experts say fentanyl gets into the US by being concealed in passenger car door panels and hidden among goods trucked across the border by 18-wheelers.
Experts say fentanyl gets into the US by being concealed in passenger car door panels and hidden among goods trucked across the border by 18-wheelers.
U.S. Border Patrol

“China-Mexico law enforcement cooperation against the trafficking of fentanyl and precursor agents for meth and synthetic opioids remains minimal,” reads a report, “China and Synthetic Drugs: Geopolitics Trumps Counternarcotics Cooperation,” released in March by the Brookings Institution.

“China’s enforcement of its fentanyl regulations is highly opaque, but remains limited,” writes Vanda Felbab-Brown, the report’s author. “Beijing mostly emphasizes that it cannot take actions against companies selling non-scheduled meth and fentanyl precursors even when they blatantly cater to drug cartels. As a result, US-China counternarcotics cooperation remains fraught.”

For Almonte and others, fentanyl — cheap to produce and easy to transport because the pills are often the size of aspirin — will continue to flood the US market from Mexico.

“I interviewed a state police officer in the state of Chihuahua who told me that we’d better get ready in the US,” he said. “The whole thing is only going to get worse.”


By: Ny Post

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Kourtney Kardashian uses Kopari Coconut Melt to ‘look good naked’

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Page Six may be compensated and/or receive an affiliate commission if you buy through our links.

Kourtney Kardashian’s no stranger to showing skin.

Whether the reality star’s modeling lingerie, baring it all in a bikini or packing on PDA with husband Travis Barker, she’s clearly confident about her body — and relies on a selection of tried-and-true products to keep her skin in tip-top shape.

In one of her first-ever Poosh stories, fittingly titled “How to Look Good Naked,” the 43-year-old outlines some of her body care essentials, including La Mer The Body Crème ($300), Dr. Barbara Sturm Anti-Aging Body Cream ($95) and Le Labo’s Pin 12 Candle ($82) — the latter because “lighting is everything.”

But not everything on Kardashian’s list will bust your budget. She also swears by Kopari Organic Coconut Melt, which will set you back just $29 for a full-sized jar or $18 for a mini version.

“In order to achieve glowy skin, it’s important to moisturize everything — everywhere — at least once a day,” the Poosh piece reads. “Don’t forget to care for your hands and feet as well; we recommend focusing on these areas at night.”

Billed as “a deep conditioner for your bod,” the product is comprised of 100% organic, unrefined coconut oil, and Kopari suggests applying it “as soon as you step out of the shower and at the end of the day.”

What’s more, the multitasking product also works well as a hair mask, dry shave oil, bath mix-in and belly balm, per the brand.

Snag a tub for yourself below — and get ready to look fabulous in your birthday suit, too.

Kopari Organic Coconut melt
Kopari


By: Ny Post

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Carlos Carrasco’s gem, three homers propel Mets past Marlins

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MIAMI — He’s one tough Cookie these days.

Carlos Carrasco isn’t going to win any contests blowing away hitters, but the right-hander’s offspeed pitches and command — and most importantly, his health — have converged this season to give the Mets an invaluable rotation piece.

On Saturday, he gave his team 7 ²/₃ shutout innings in a 4-0 victory over the Marlins at loanDepot park. Carrasco extended his scoreless streak over his past three starts to 18 ²/₃ innings.

The win was No. 100 in Carrasco’s career, making the 35-year-old the eighth Venezuelan-born pitcher to reach the milestone. Carrasco last surrendered a run on July 9 against the Marlins at Citi Field.

The Mets (63-37) won their fifth straight and reached the 100-game mark with the franchise’s most victories since 1986.

Overall, Carrasco allowed four hits and struck out seven with two walks. Seth Lugo replaced Carrasco in the eighth inning after Charles Leblanc had doubled with two outs. But Leblanc was picked off second base by Tomas Nido, ensuring Carrasco’s scoreless streak continued.

Carlos Carrasco didn't allow a run in the Mets' 4-0 win over the Marlins.
Carlos Carrasco didn’t allow a run in the Mets’ 4-0 win over the Marlins.
AP

Lugo remained in the game to pitch a scoreless ninth inning, allowing Edwin Diaz a day off following a 10-pitch outing Friday in which he struck out the side.

The Mets will try for a three-game sweep of the reeling Marlins on Sunday with Taijuan Walker on the mound.

After scuffling at the plate for seven innings, the Mets gave Carrasco breathing room in the eighth when Francisco Lindor and J.D. Davis each blasted a solo homer to give the Mets a 4-0 lead. Davis’ homer, in a pinch-hitting appearance, came as the Mets are searching on the trade market for a right-handed bat to solidify the DH spot.

The Mets have traded for two lefty bats in the last week-plus to bolster the other half of the DH equation. One of those additions, Tyler Naquin, debuted for the Mets on Saturday in left field and went 0-for-4. Daniel Vogelbach started at DH and drew a walk in four plate appearances.

Carrasco’s gem was the latest strong performance by a Mets starting pitcher. Entering play, the Mets had a 2.45 ERA from the starting rotation in July, which ranked second in the major leagues. Chris Bassitt had a rare flat start for the Mets a night earlier, when he allowed four earned runs over six innings.

Jeff McNeil hit a solo homer in the third against rookie Nick Neidert to give the Mets their first run. The homer was the first since June 14 for McNeil, who entered the day with a .162/.240/.191 slash line in July.

The Mets weren’t finished in the inning: Nido, Brandon Nimmo and Lindor all singled. Lindor’s hit extended the Mets’ lead to 2-0 and gave the shortstop 68 RBIs for the season before he reached 69 with his blast later.

Carrasco was challenged in the first inning, when he allowed a single to Miguel Rojas and walk to Jesus Aguilar before retiring JJ Bleday for the final out. In the fourth, Carrasco surrendered a leadoff single, but he escaped the inning when he got Bleday to ground into a double-play.


By: Ny Post

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Career NYC criminal tries to steal moped from NYPD station

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A brazen career criminal with more than 50 arrests on his rap sheet, including rape, was busted for trying to steal a moped from outside a lower Manhattan police station.

Jon Matos was caught red-handed approaching the $1,200 bike outside the 5th Precinct, sources said.

He was allegedly using a set of burglary tools Friday to try to bust the lock of the bike, which was vouchered property, cops and sources said.

Matos, a homeless father of three, was arraigned in Manhattan Criminal Court on charges of attempted grand larceny and possession of burglary tools.

The proceeding was delayed for hours, sources said, after Matos allegedly became angry with a cellmate who used the facilities — but didn’t courtesy flush.

“I was just f–king with it. It’s not my tools,” he allegedly told an NYPD detective, said Manhattan Assistant District Attorney Megan Mers during the court proceeding.

Judge Valentina Morales Saturday agreed to give Matos supervised release in the moped case.

“Thank you, your honor,” Matos told Morales.

But instead of hitting the streets once again, Matos was held on outstanding charges from the 23rd Precinct in an unrelated case, authorities said.

It was his second appearance before a judge in a week: Matos was in court days earlier, charged with grand larceny, petit larceny, and criminal possession of stolen property and was released in yet another incident.

Matos has racked up dozens of busts for burglary, robbery, fare evasion — including the 1999 rape of a 14-year-old girl.

Crime is up in six of the seven major crimes measured by the department contributed to the increase — though the seventh category, murders, dropped a noticeable 31.6% last month in comparison to numbers compiled in June 2021, according to the NYPD’s preliminary statistics.

Grand larceny spiked 41%, robbery rose 36.1% and burglary went up 33.8%.

When addressing the crime spike last month, NYPD Commissioner Keechant Sewell said the department was arresting the same people for crimes “over and over again.”

Other recent and brazen repeat offenders include veteran shoplifter Isaac “Man of Steal” Rodriguez, who was finally locked up in January after dozens of arrests for stealing to support his drug habit.

Laron Mack, whose catchphrase is “I steal for a living,” has been arrested more than 50 times. Another serial stealer, James Connelly, was busted in December for involvement in 28 separate incidents over three months.

Last month, accused serial shoplifter Lorenzo McLucas, 34, was nabbed for stealing from the cosmetics counter at a Duane Reade on Lexington Avenue in Midtown Manhattan, according to cops and court documents.

McLucas, who was released on his own recognizance, has notched 122 prior arrests.


By: Ny Post

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