6,000 fentanyl pills seized in Mankato

File photo

Authorities found 6,000 pills that contained fentanyl during a search of a Mankato home on Saturday.

The Blue Earth County Sheriff's Office announced the bust by the Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force on Sunday. Six people are now being held and are expected to face drug sales and possession charges.

Deputies say the group was selling counterfeit oxycodone pills that tested positive for fentanyl.

"Field tests confirmed the presence of fentanyl in these pills, underscoring the danger posed by illicit drug distribution networks," officials wrote in a news release. "The diligent work of law enforcement in this operation highlights their commitment to combatting the distribution of dangerous substances within our communities. It's crucial work to crack down on the distribution of counterfeit pills and powder containing fentanyl."

Fentanyl, a powerful opioid, can be deadly in very small amounts, particularly for people with no tolerance, making counterfeit pills even more dangerous. Users will often unsuspectingly take an overdose of fentanyl, thinking the pills are oxycodone or another substance.