February 29, 2024

Selected samples seized from the United States Southwest border are submitted to the Center for Forensic Science Research and Education (CFSRE) for testing for research purposes of qualitative and quantitative testing. The purpose of this report is provide information on an atypical batch of counterfeit tablets that was received and tested which contained multiple complex drug mixtures representing a significant health threat.

Seized tablets and powders suspected of containing fentanyl are analyzed at CFSRE using a workflow that includes microscopic imaging of tablets using the MiScope® Megapixel MP3, qualitative analysis by both gas chromatography mass spectrometry (GC/MS) as well as liquid chromatography quadrupole time-of-flight mass spectrometry (LC-QTOF-MS) for identification of novel substances, and quantitative analysis using Waters® Acquity UPLC coupled with a Waters Xevo® TQ-S micro.