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Enough drugs seized to kill half of Florida’s population

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Florida police have seized more than 23 kilograms of the synthetic drug fentanyl, enough to kill more than 11 million people, about half of that US state’s population.

Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody released a statement this Wednesday that 25 drug-trafficking defendants are members of a Mexican crime ring that sells the drug in jails in that state in the southeastern United States.

In a note, the Prosecutor General’s Office indicates that these detainees were associated with Mexican drug cartels and, in particular, are members of the SUR-13 gang, responsible for crimes related to drug trafficking.

In July, Ashley Moody asked US President Joe Biden to classify fentanyl, which is responsible for tens of thousands of deaths in the country, as a “weapon of mass destruction.”

Very strong synthetic drugs such as fentanyl are responsible for a new high in overdose deaths in the US.

Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid that can be up to 50 times more potent than heroin, and even small amounts can be fatal.

According to an investigation conducted by the US Federal Police (FBI), the Department of Homeland Security and the Hendry County Sheriff’s Office, members of the SUR-13 gang ran a drug trafficking organization in Florida prisons.

The prosecutor pointed out that in just a few months, authorities seized enough fentanyl “to wipe out the combined population of 66 of Florida’s 67 counties: more than 19 million people.”

According to investigators, in cooperation with the MS-13 and Latin Kings gangs, the leaders of the criminal organization authorized the execution of other prisoners and the distribution of drugs from Mexico.

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Using smuggled mobile phones, SUR-13 members communicated with each other from various state prisons.

During the operation, authorities seized more than 23 kilograms of fentanyl, as well as 172 kilograms of methamphetamine, 2.2 kilograms of cocaine, 566 grams of oxycodone, 453 grams of black tar heroin and 226 grams of morphine.

US justice has indicted 25 suspects on 64 counts, including extortion, drug trafficking and conspiracy to organize criminal activities, among many others.

In 2021, 77% of all teen overdose deaths in the US were associated with fentanyl use.

In Florida, in the twelve months from October 2020 to September 2021, 7,574 people died from overdoses, compared to 7,422 during the same period the previous year.

In 2019, the Department of Homeland Security was already considering classifying fentanyl as a weapon of mass destruction, given its “high toxicity and growing availability of the drug.”

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Vladimir Putin has delayed the invasion of Ukraine at least three times.

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Putin has repeatedly consulted with Russian Chief of the General Staff Valery Gerasimov and Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu about the invasion, Europa Press told Ukraine’s chief intelligence director Vadim Skibitsky.

According to Skibitsky, it was the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), which is responsible for counterintelligence and espionage work, that put pressure on Gerasimov and other military agencies to agree to launch an offensive. .

However, according to the Ukrainian intelligence services, the FSB considered that by the end of February sufficient preparations had already been made to guarantee the success of the Russian Armed Forces in a lightning invasion.

However, according to Kyiv, the Russian General Staff provided the Russian troops with supplies and ammunition for only three days, hoping that the offensive would be swift and immediately successful.

The head of Ukrainian intelligence also emphasized the cooperation of local residents, who always provided the Ukrainian authorities with up-to-date information about the Russian army, such as the number of soldiers or the exact location of troops.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

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Life sentence for former Swedish official for spying for Russia

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A Stockholm court on Monday sentenced a former Swedish intelligence officer to life in prison for spying for Russia, and his brother to at least 12 years in prison. In what is considered one of the most serious cases in Swedish counterintelligence history, much of the trial took place behind closed doors in the name of national security.

According to the prosecution, it was Russian military intelligence, the GRU, who took advantage of the information provided by the two brothers between 2011 and their arrest at the end of 2021.

Peyman Kia, 42, has held many senior positions in the Swedish security apparatus, including the army and his country’s intelligence services (Säpo). His younger brother, Payam, 35, is accused of “participating in the planning” of the plot and of “managing contacts with Russia and the GRU, including passing on information and receiving financial rewards.”

Both men deny the charges, and their lawyers have demanded an acquittal on charges of “aggravated espionage,” according to the Swedish news agency TT.

The trial coincides with another case of alleged Russian espionage, with the arrest of the Russian-born couple in late November in a suburb of Stockholm by a police team arriving at dawn in a Blackhawk helicopter.

Research website Bellingcat identified them as Sergei Skvortsov and Elena Kulkova. The couple allegedly acted as sleeper agents for Moscow, having moved to Sweden in the late 1990s.

According to Swedish press reports, the couple ran companies specializing in the import and export of electronic components and industrial technology.

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The man was again detained at the end of November for “illegal intelligence activities.” His partner, suspected of being an accomplice, has been released but remains under investigation.

According to Swedish authorities, the arrests are not related to the trial of the Kia brothers.

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Ukraine admitted that Russia may announce a general mobilization

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“They can strengthen their positions. We understand that this can happen. At the same time, we do not rule out that they will announce a general mobilization,” Danilov said in an interview with the Ukrainska Pravda online publication.

Danilov believed that this mobilization would also be convened “to exterminate as many as possible” of Russian citizens, so that “they would no longer have any problems on their territory.”

In this sense, Danilov also reminded that Russia has not given up on securing control over Kyiv or the idea of ​​the complete “destruction” of Ukraine. “We have to be ready for anything,” he said.

“I want everyone to understand that [os russos] they have not given up on the idea of ​​destroying our nation. If they don’t have Kyiv in their hands, they won’t have anything in their hands, we must understand this,” continued Danilov, who also did not rule out that a new Russian offensive would come from “Belarus and other territories.” .

As such, Danilov praised the decision of many of its residents who chose to stay in the Ukrainian capital when the war broke out in order to defend the city.

“They expected that there would be panic, that people would run, that there would be nothing to protect Kyiv,” he added, referring to President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The military offensive launched on February 24 by Russia in Ukraine caused at least 6.5 million internally displaced persons and more than 7.8 million refugees to European countries, which is why the UN classifies this migration crisis as the worst in Europe since World War II (1939-1945). gg.). ).

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At the moment, 17.7 million Ukrainians are in need of humanitarian assistance, and 9.3 million are in need of food aid and housing.

The Russian invasion, justified by Russian President Vladimir Putin on the need to “denazify” and demilitarize Ukraine for Russia’s security, was condemned by the international community at large, which responded by sending weapons to Ukraine and imposing political and economic sanctions on Russia.

The UN has presented as confirmed 6,755 civilian deaths and 10,607 wounded since the beginning of the war, stressing that these figures are much lower than the real ones.

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