Mac Miller fake oxy dealer sentenced to 17 years

The man who arranged the drugs deal that killed US rapper Mac Miller dealer has been formally sentenced to more than 17 years of prison.

Stephen Andrew Walter (49) agreed a deal with prosecutors last year that included the long prison term in exchange for a guilty plea. He admitted a federal criminal charge of distribution of fentanyl, which carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 20 years in federal prison.

Counterfeit oxycodone pills laced with fentanyl were considered to be the major contributor to Miller's death, although the singer was also found to have taken cocaine and alcohol in his final hours.

The judge in the Central District of California court who delivered the sentence – Otis D Wright II – refused to set the term at 17 years as originally agreed, adding another six months to the tally as Walter continued to sell counterfeit pills after Miller's death and up until his 2019 arrest.

Rolling Stone magazine reports that Walter agreed to the higher sentence after discussing it briefly with his lawyer.

Fentanyl is one of the main drivers for an epidemic in opioid-related deaths still sweeping the US, with the number of seized pills containing the drug rising from 42,200 in 2018 to almost 2.1 million last year.

The drug – which is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine – was responsible for almost half of the 67,000 drug overdose deaths in the US in 2018.

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