Gosar Reintroduces Federal Death Penalty Legislation to Combat the Fentanyl Crisis
Washington, February 28, 2023
Washington, D.C. – Representative Paul Gosar, DDS (AZ-09) issued the following statement after reintroducing H.R. 1212, the Death Penalty for Dealing Fentanyl Act, legislation that would punish a defendant with the death penalty or life in prison if convicted of selling or distributing fentanyl.
“Once again, I have introduced H.R. 1212, the Death Penalty for Dealing Fentanyl Act, legislation that would punish a defendant with the death penalty or life in prison if convicted of selling or distributing fentanyl that resulted in death.
Each passing day, fentanyl brings death and despair to communities across America, including in Arizona. Fentanyl now kills more Americans than car accidents, suicides or gun violence.
The calamity grows worse month after month. Sadly, just last week, the Tempe Police Department announced an estimated 4.5 million fentanyl pills and 3,000 pounds of methamphetamine, heroine and cocaine were seized during a recent drug bust in Arizona. Days earlier and just down the road in Sacaton, another 1,500 pounds of fentanyl were seized by Arizona state troopers.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, 196 Americans are dying each day from fentanyl, and more than 2,000 pounds of the deadly drug pour across our open southern border every month. Meanwhile, Joe Biden does nothing to close the border or penalize the drug cartels and others known to be trafficking deadly drugs.
We must get tough on those criminals that are contributing to this drug crisis. My legislation would punish anyone who knowingly traffics fentanyl with the death penalty or life in prison,” concluded Congressman Gosar.
Fentanyl-related deaths doubled in 30 states between 2019 and 2021, according to an analysis of United States government data by the opioid awareness organization Families Against Fentanyl. The synthetic opioid can be deadly even in very small amounts, and other drugs, including heroin, meth and marijuana, can be laced with the dangerous drug. Mexico and China are the primary sources for the flow of fentanyl into the United States, according to the Drug Enforcement Agency.
H.R. 1212 would amend Part D of the Controlled Substance Act by adding any person who knowingly distributes, possesses with the intents to distribute, or manufactures fentanyl shall, if death results, be punished by death or imprisonment for life.