By Paul Kurtz

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The U.S. Attorney for Eastern Pennsylvania has announced the formation of a regional task force to take on the opioid crisis.

U.S. Attorney Lou Lappen was joined by district attorneys from the surrounding counties and beyond as he laid out their plans to share resources and develop strategies to battle opioid abuse.

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“We have to continue to fight against this deadly crisis of opioid addiction and opioid death,” Lappen said.

Among the task force’s targets: smuggling operations and street level traffickers, doctors and pharmacists who prey on addicts and over-prescribe to patients, and opioid dealers lurking on the dark web.

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But the task force will be taking a hands off approach to the pharmaceutical industry. Lappen was asked if he thought opioids should be outlawed.

“I’m not here to state my personal opinion on that. We’re here to take care of law enforcement,” Lappen answered. “I do know that there are uses for opioids that are effective. It’s a big problem, but that’s something that will have to be addressed elsewhere.”

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Lappen added that the task force is not a lobbying group and therefore will not ask Congress to pass legislation banning opioids.