Man who supplied fake oxy to Mac Miller gets 11 years

A man who pleaded guilty to providing the counterfeit oxycodone pills that killed US rapper Mac Miller has been sentenced to 11 years in federal prison.

Ryan Michael Reavis (39) pleaded guilty on last November to one count of distributing fentanyl in the form of fake oxycodone, admitting to supplying counterfeit oxycodone pills to co-defendant Cameron James Pettit, who handed them to Miller two days before the artist had a fatal overdose.

The counterfeit oxycodone pills 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 deal took place at the direction of co-defendant Stephen Andrew Walter, who agreed a deal with prosecutors last year that included a 17-year prison sentence. Walter is due to be officially sentenced on May 16 and the case against Pettit remains pending.

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 was responsible for almost half of the 67,000 drug overdose deaths in the US in 2018. It is a schedule II prescription opioid – approved by the FDA for use in severe pain – but is 50 to 100 times more potent than morphine so a serious risk of overdose.

Fake pills laced with fentanyl are also thought to be behind the deaths of other celebrities including Prince and Lil Peep, as well as the near-death overdose of Demi Lovato. Meanwhile, fentanyl was also implicated in the deaths of Tom Petty and Michael Jackson.

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