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13 pounds of fentanyl seized by NC deputies turns out to be sugar

August 29, 2018 GMT

Thirteen pounds of a white powdery substance seized by the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office last month was actually sugar, not fentanyl, according to NBC affiliate WECT.

Lt. Jerry Brewer told WECT that private lab testing results by NMS labs revealed the powder is “a combination of simple and complex carbohydrates” with no controlled or non-controlled substances mixed in.

Initial field tests conducted on multiple bags containing the powder came back positive for fentanyl, and that false positive can be traced to a CSI field test using a kit invented and sold by Scott Company Drug Testing, WECT reports.


The fentanyl field test kit used by the local CSI can falsely identify sugar as fentanyl, Brewer told WECT.

At the time, the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office billed the bust as “one of the largest seizures in the state,” but one week later, the state realized there was a problem when the state lab determined that the powder was not fentanyl and they were unable to identify it.