ONLY ON 6: DEA says Gloversville arrest marks first carfentanil bust in Upstate New York


GLOVERSVILLE, N.Y. (WRGB) - A deadly new drug has been discovered on the streets of the Capital Region for the first time.

A special agent from the DEA confirms this is the first carfentanil bust ever in Upstate New York.

The drug is 10,000 times more potent than morphine.

“It's commercially used to tranquilize elephants and rhinoceroses,” said DEA Special Agent in Charge David Zon.

25-yr-old Justin Brooker has been indicted on charges he sold $350 worth of carfentanil to a confidential informant in Gloversville.

Special Agent Zon says the bust is significant because it's the first time the DEA has seen carfentanil in any upstate community.

“Anything north of Westchester there hasn't been a seizure or any inkling of a presence of carfentanil up until this recent case,” Zon said.

The DEA assisted local authorities with the Gloversville bust back in March, but the sealed indictment was just made public.

Zon says carfentanil is produced in China, and is sold to drug dealers through an online black market referred to as "the dark web".

But in this case, the DEA believes Brooker bought the drug locally, meaning there's likely more in our area.

“We know that it came from another location in the Capital District area, and we're following up leads, looking into figuring out where that came from,” Zon said.

Zon says the presence of carfentanil is extremely concerning because it's 100 times stronger than fentanyl, the opioid responsible for a number of overdose deaths related to the heroin epidemic.

A lethal amount of carfentanil is equivalent to a fraction of a grain of salt.

Zon says the public should be vigilant if they suspect drug activity in their community.

“We need to locate and find out where this carfentanil is located in the Capital District because again it could lead to multiple overdose and deaths.”

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