Fentanyl warning after latest case in Roswell
ATLANTA - A Roswell woman was indicted on federal charges after authorities said she sold counterfeit pills laced with Fentanyl and synthetic opioids.
U.S. Attorney John Horn is calling this a growing trend.
"It's one of the first indications of this kind of counterfeit pill that we've seen in the Atlanta area," said U.S. Attorney John Horn.
The U.S. Attorney's Office said 38-year-old Cathine Sellers is charged with distribution of controlled substances after selling 100 counterfeit pills at $1,400 out of her Roswell townhouse. Officials said she sold the pills to a confidential informant working with the DEA.
Officials said the pills contained the potent drug, Fentanyl.
"We are talking about microgram quantities that can lead to overdose, can lead to respiratory failure and death," said Horn.
Last month, officials issued a warning after fake Percocet pills caused overdoses in Macon, killing five people. The U.S. Attorney's Office and the Atlanta DEA are issuing a public warning once again, not only for the community but hospitals and law enforcement after this recent case.
"Law enforcement faces risks with these pills because they can be toxic just by touch or by consuming the dust if you are doing a search," said Horn.
Cathine Sellers' attorney said she is not guilty.
"I understand the government's interest in pursuing cases relating to Fentanyl but I'm afraid, like with so many other things, that they're casting their net too broadly," said Page Pate. "I don't believe Ms. Sellers is the type of distributor or trafficker that the government is seeking."
The U.S. Attorney's Office said they are seeing an increase in cases and are taking them all extremely seriously.
"The unfortunate thing is we will be seeing more announcements like just this in my office as well as with our local law enforcement partners," said Horn.
Horn said for an offense that causes serious bodily harm or death could carry a mandatory minimum of 20 years in prison or life.