Baker Unveils New Drug Law Proposals

(AP Photo/Steven Senne, File)

BOSTON (AP) — Gov. Charlie Baker is proposing new strategies for cracking down on the distribution of deadly synthetic drugs in Massachusetts.

The Republican governor unveiled legislation on Wednesday that would allow for a prison sentence of at least five years for anyone who illegally distributes a dangerous drug that causes death.

Another bill would make it easier for police to respond to new synthetic opioids as they enter the state.

Baker is also proposing to strengthen the state’s witness protection laws and close a loophole in Massachusetts law by making the crime of solicitation to commit murder a felony.

He unveiled the legislative package at a drug treatment and recovery center.

State health officials say the synthetic drug fentanyl was present in 81 percent of opioid-related deaths in the first three months of 2017.

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