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DOJ, tech companies to discuss illegal fentanyl sales

Apr 3, 2023
Lisa Monaco speaks at a press conference

Lisa Monaco speaks at a press conference on Jan. 18, 2023. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco will meet with tech company representatives on Tuesday to discuss how to combat the illegal sale of drugs on social media platforms, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: Opioid deaths in the U.S. have skyrocketed in recent years, and lawmakers and regulators are especially worried about kids accessing drugs like fentanyl through popular apps.

  • Meta, Google and Snapchat will participate in the meeting, according to spokespeople for each company.
  • Reddit has also been invited, according to two people familiar with the matter, but has not confirmed.
  • DEA Administrator Anne Milgram will also participate in the meeting.

Between the lines: Tech companies may fall short as they aren’t planning to send their CEOs to the meeting, while DOJ is deploying Monaco — the department’s second highest-ranking official.

What they're saying: "We invited CEO’s of several social media companies to have a frank conversation. The goal is to talk to the right people, who are empowered to make tough decisions about real changes on behalf of these platforms," DOJ told Axios.

  • "While all of the CEO’s have delegated their participation, and not all companies are sending executives, nevertheless, we hope that tomorrow’s meeting will be productive."
  • A Snap spokesperson said: "Doing our part to combat the U.S. fentanyl epidemic has been a top priority for us and we remain focused on working with other platforms to share intelligence, educating our community about the dangers of fentanyl, and supporting law enforcement investigations."
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