The fight against drug might be called labor of love for US president Donald Trump – his brother died as a result of alcohol abuse. Now the president wants to crack down on the opioid crisis.

Trump will present a plan to fight against the rapid increase in painkillers. According to one employee, the plan provides for the death penalty for drug traffickers. The Justice Department will apply for the death penalty where it is “appropriate under current law,” announced Trump’s Home Affairs Council Chairman Andrew Bremberg. He did not name concrete examples. The White House referred further questions to the Ministry of Justice.

The news channel CNN, citing official sources, allegedly considered the death penalty for serious drug offenses.

As Bremberg explains, the number of prescriptions for analgesics on opioid basis is expected to fall by one third over the next three years. In addition, Trump wants to make sure that dealers can be punished if they are caught with a smaller amount of drugs than before. Prevention and education work should also be strengthened. The president plans to unveil the plans this Monday in New Hampshire, heavily affected by the opioid crisis.

Massive problem of the USA

In the US, there has been a significant increase in deaths from analgesics and heroin in recent years, which is referred to in the public debate as the opioid crisis. In this context, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) counted about 42,250 drug victims in 2016 – a record number and an increase of 47 percent in two years. In October, in light of the opioid crisis, the US president proclaimed the national health emergency.

Trump had already demanded the death penalty for drug dealers at an event in Pennsylvania earlier this month. He said that whoever shoots a person gets the death penalty. Each individual drug dealer could be responsible for thousands of deaths and nothing happens to them.

Numerous US politicians make the pharmaceutical companies responsible for the crisis. Among other things, they accuse companies of misleading advertising and trivializing the risks of painkillers. On Wednesday, South Dakota, the 16th state, sued several corporations, including a Johnson & Johnson subsidiary. The company rejects the allegations.