Today, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated one of the most significant drug traffickers in the world – Chinese national Zhang Taotao. Zhang and Hong Kong-based entity Allyrise Technology Group Co., Limited, were designated pursuant to the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act (Kingpin Act) for their role in international drug trafficking. Today’s action is part of a continued whole-of-government effort to combat the illegal production and trafficking of fentanyl and other synthetic opioids from the PRC, which have claimed the lives of hundreds of thousands of Americans.
Zhang has shipped synthetic opioids to the United States via multiple individuals and freight-forwarding services and used false labelling to disguise parcel contents and avoid seizure by authorities. Once a package is received in the United States, U.S.-based distributors press fentanyl into counterfeit pharmaceutical pills for further distribution and domestic consumption. Allyrise Technology Group Co., Limited, was designated for being owned, controlled, directed by, or acting for or on behalf of Zhang.
Today’s designations are part of a broad U.S. effort to disrupt and deter drug trafficking organizations from buying illicit precursor chemicals from the PRC, using those precursors to manufacture fentanyl, and trafficking the finished products into the United States. The United States continues to seek cooperation with the PRC to tackle this supply chain threat and calls on the PRC government to accelerate efforts to regulate its chemical industry and reduce the diversion of precursors into the international black market.
The State Department will continue to use all available tools to combat drug trafficking globally, including through programs that seek to disrupt and deter the illicit drug trade and transnational organized crime networks such as Kingpin designations, and the Department’s Narcotics and Transnational Organized Crime Rewards programs.