Pain Pill Corridor of the World Raided in Broward

Over 40,000 pills were confiscated by authorities Tuesday

The pain killer capital of the world is getting safer thanks to a new law and the swift actions of local law enforcement.

More than 40,000 pain pills from a dozen different clinics were confiscated by Broward County agencies Tuesday afternoon as part of a coordinated strike against illegal pill mills.

Among the drugs taken in the raids was Oxycodone, which has become one of the most in demand prescription drugs that Broward clinics are notorious for supplying.

"There is more Oxycodone in the state of Florida than in all of the other states combined," Sunrise Police Chief John Brooks said.

Under a new state law that took effect last week, clinics and doctors can only write prescriptions for pain drugs, which now must be filled at pharmacies. Leftover pills can be returned to distributors or given to the state to be destroyed.

Pushing pills is big in Broward County. In fact, it doesn't get bigger.

"People flock to Broward County to buy them because it is so easy," Broward Sheriff Al Lamberti said.

It was easy and deadly for Renee Doyle's son, 25-year-old Blayne Lewis.

Lewis died after overdosing on Oxycodone he got from pain clinics. His mother said she has dedicated her life to stop organized pill pushers from contributing to anymore deaths.

According to the state, more than 2,500 people in Florida die each year from painkiller abuse

"We couldn't save them, but they are saving lives now," Doyle said.

Lamberti said one mile of Commercial Boulevard is known as the 'pain corridor of the world' and had 26 pill mills operating at one time. Now, only one remains open.

"We went in and their pills were taken, or they already disposed of them, but they will no longer be dispensing pills," Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi said. "No longer in our state anywhere. It's going to stop."

Last year, there were 130 pills mills in Broward. That's more than the number of Starbucks and McDonalds franchises located in the county. Now, there are 57.

"I'm happy to say we now have less pill mills than McDonalds," Lamberti said.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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