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Counterfeit Oxycontin leads to state-wide alert in Minnesota

Powdered fentanyl. Illustration by Bobbie Duchamp / Forum News Service

BLUE EARTH COUNTY, Minn. — State public safety officials have put out an alert about an increase of apparent Oxycontin pills that look to be legitimately manufactured, but actually, contain drugs that are exponentially stronger and have already been linked to a fatal overdose in Blue Earth County.

The pills, which actually contain fentanyl known as “Mexican Oxy,” have been linked to the overdose of a 38-year-old woman in her Mankato home Tuesday, the Bureau of Criminal Apprehension said.

Fentanyl is roughly 100 times stronger than Oxycontin, bureau officials said, with one-quarter of a pill containing enough of the drug to be fatal.

The pills found Tuesday had the letter “M” on one side and the number 30 on the other. Such counterfeit pills have been linked to other fatal overdoses across the country, bureau officials said.

“Counterfeit opioid drugs are designed to look like the real thing,” said BCA Superintendent Drew Evans. “Your supplier has no idea which dose would kill you, and neither will you. There is no safe dose.”