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SF’s ‘Operation Overdrive’ racking up drug seizures, arrests

Flickr / Creative Commons

San Francisco law enforcement agencies have been working since May 30th with state and federal partners to focus on drug enforcement in the Tenderloin and SOMA areas, the city said in a news release Friday.

This has resulted in hundreds of arrests under drug laws and for outstanding warrants, as well as the seizure of 103 kilos of narcotics, including 56 kilos of fentanyl. The San Francisco District Attorney's Office has also seen an uptick in felony narcotics cases, the city said.

Mayor London Breed said in a statement: "Shutting down open air drug markets is critical to the safety of our neighborhoods and the overall health of our city. We will continue to offer help to people in crisis, but we must hold people accountable who are hurting our communities."

So far in 2023, San Francisco police have seized over 64 kilos of narcotics, including nearly 38 kilos of fentanyl, just from the Tenderloin and South of Market neighborhoods. Citywide, officers have seized over 135 kilos of narcotics, including over 89 kilos of fentanyl, more than all of last year's drug seizures combined.

More than 300 dealers have been arrested in the last three months. Officers have also arrested 123 wanted fugitives in the Tenderloin and South of Market during the same time period, the city said.

In addition, the California Highway Patrol has made 100 drug arrests in the city, seizing 39 kilos of narcotics, including 18 kilos of fentanyl.

As a result of Operation Overdrive, the District Attorney's Office has seen a record number of felony narcotics cases presented and filed year to date since 2018.

Sunni M. Khalid is a veteran of more than 40 years in journalism, having worked in print, radio, television, and web journalism.