China bans synthetic opioid production

Heroin laced with fentanyl (News 4 San Antonio photo)

A Chinese ban went into effect today on the production of synthetic opioids. It is one the United States Department of Agriculture is calling a "game changer" when it comes to its battle with manufactured opioids. That ban includes fentanyl.

Ty Hernandez was one of the thousands who lost his life to a fentanyl overdose in the United States in 2016. He was 23.

"I opened the door and there he was laying in the fetal position, dead. My life at that moment stopped," said Ty's mother, Peggy.

The autopsy showed he had done heroin laced with the powerful painkiller fentanyl. It is 50 to 100 times more potent than heroin.

"He was dead the moment he took his first inhale."

"The drug dealer was still sending text messages to Mr. Hernandez because he wanted to be paid," said Blad Rojo, United States Postal Inspector.

That's how the police found the dealer.

A federal jury convicted him. The dealer was sentenced to 30 years. It was the first time a federal jury convicted a dealer for selling the drugs that killed someone.

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