Chinese chemical producers selling fentanyl ingredients have received more than $27 million in crypto payments.According to a new report by blockchain analytics firm Elliptic, approximately 90% of Chinese pharmaceutical chemical companies supplying fentanyl precursors accept cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and Tether as a form of payment.The report revealed that most of the Chinese labs providing fentanyl ingredients used accounts at “three specific exchanges” based outside of China, which were unnamed in the report.
After analyzing the cryptocurrency wallets used by these companies, Elliptic revealed that they have received thousands of payments totaling just over $27 million and that the number of "transactions has increased by 450% year-on-year.""$27 million would purchase enough precursor to produce fentanyl pills with a street value of approximately $54 billion," the company said. "Elliptic researchers received offers from more than 90 China-based companies to supply fentanyl precursors, 90% of which accepted cryptocurrency payments."Fentanyl is a synthetic opioid pain reliever that is similar to morphine but is up to 100 times more potent.
It is prescribed by doctors to treat severe pain such as that experienced by cancer patients. However, fentanyl is also made and used illegally as a recreational drug because of its powerful effects on the body.
The illegal version of fentanyl is manufactured in clandestine laboratories and is sold on the black market in various forms, including powder, pills, and a patch.Read more on cryptonews.com