Counterfeit ‘Xanax’ pills could cause dangerous overdose

Posted at 2:05 PM, Feb 02, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-02 16:05:52-05

MONROE COUNTY, Ill. -- Illinois State Police are issuing a deadly warning -- drug dealers are now counterfeiting Xanax pills and selling them on the street.

The fake pills contain a mixture that could be deadly. Monroe County Sheriff Neal Rohlfing says Xanax is one of the most abused prescription medicines.

“We want the public to be aware. We want everyone to know the current dangers of this drug trend," Sheriff Rohlfing said.

A photo comparison from the San Francisco Department of Public Health shows just how talented drug dealers are.  Real Xanax is on the left. The counterfeit is on the right.

Counterfeit “Xanax” on red background. Real Xanax on grey background. Photo: San Francisco Department of Public Health

“These counterfeit pills are created and made with a pill press so it actually says Xanax on it, just like the prescription medication," Sheriff Rohlfing said.

Sheriff Rohlfing explains that the fake pills contain a potentially lethal dose of fentanyl, which is much stronger than morphine.

Police say the fake "Xanax" has been found in at least 21 states, however a list of the states was not provided.