To the People

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Tuesday, April 17, 2007

New/Emerging Drug Trade Routes

Interesting, but short section in Foreign Policy giving a few examples of emerging trade routes in the global illicit-drug markets.

Something we all knew:
Methamphetamine to the United States
New front: Mexico, with component parts shipped primarily from China, India, and Germany. Mexican organized crime is producing stronger meth in “superlabs,” then sending it along via the traditional routes for cocaine and marijuana trafficking: from Tijuana into San Diego and up the West Coast of the United States, or from western Mexico through major Texas cities and other southern U.S. urban hubs. Today, U.S. officials estimate that 80 percent of the meth in the United States originates in Mexico.

Reason for the shift: The U.S. Congress passed the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act in 2006, which tightened restrictions on the component parts (ephedrine and pseudoephedrine) that producers were using to concoct meth in their basements and garages. Pharmacies and discount stores clamped down, moving Sudafed and NyQuil behind the counter and pushing production of the dangerous drug south of the border.
Full article here.

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