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Posted: 4/10/2006 7:42:22 PM EDT
Meth Labs Decreasing, But Ice Is Taking Over

Dale DeWoody
April 10, 2006
TIMES RECORD
www.swtimes.com/articles/2006/04/10/news/news04.txt
The number of methamphetamine labs in the area has decreased dramatically over the past few years, but the decline has little to do with legislation that went into effect last year, officials said.

In March 2005, Arkansas passed Act 256, which removed medications containing pseudoephedrine, a key ingredient in meth, from store shelves. But the decline started earlier.

“Our lab numbers had already dropped over 50 percent a year before the law was passed,” said Sgt. George Lawson, narcotics officer for the Fort Smith Police Department.

In 2003 there were 70 meth labs investigated by the Fort Smith police, according to records. The number dropped to 32 labs in 2004, and to just seven labs in 2005.

Lawson said the reason for the decrease in meth labs is the increase in crystal meth, or “ice,” that is being brought in from other areas.

Investigator Lanny Reese of the 12th/21st Judicial Drug Task Force agrees.

“The meth labs are being shut down because of the import of ice from Mexico,” he said.

The area is being flooded with the purer form of crystallized meth, made in super labs in Mexico and states like California, Texas, New Mexico and Arizona, said investigator Anthony Sacco with the drug task force.

Meth labs in the area usually make small amounts of meth in powder form for the makers’ own use, said Sacco.

Buying large amounts of ice to sell is much safer and easier than trying to manufacture meth, and the penalty for selling is generally less than the sentence for manufacturing.

Lawson said those sentenced for manufacturing meth must serve a minimum of 50 percent of the sentence, but those convicted of selling meth may serve just one-sixth of the sentence.

This encourages meth dealers to buy imported meth instead of trying to manufacture their own, said Lawson.

Another problem is with illegal immigrants who bring the meth to the area, authorities said. “At least 75 percent of the meth dealers we arrest are illegal (immigrants),” Lawson said.
(this guy must be a racist, heh)

They get paid a lot of money to deliver the meth here, and when they get arrested they are often deported, he said.

After they are deported, they sometimes come back again.

Lawson said that an illegal immigrant was arrested with meth in Fort Smith and was deported. Within one week, police arrested the same man in Fort Smith with meth again.

“Until we put a stop to the ice being imported, we’ll continue to have a problem,” said Reese.

The demand for meth is great, which makes it more difficult to stop.

“It’s a lucrative business,” said Sacco.

A dealer can buy a pound of ice for around $10,000. It can then be cut up and sold in small quantities to make around $40,000, said Sacco. That is a $30,000 profit.

As larger quantities are brought in, investigative tactics have to be changed.

“We have to spend more money to buy from bigger dealers to get evidence against them,” said Lawson.

The larger quantities also mean more investigators are needed to help slow the problem.

Sacco said that most drug task force investigators work a lot of extra hours and are on call 24 hours a day.

“We can always use more funding and more staff members,” he said.

Lawson, Reese and Sacco say the new law may have had some effect on the number of meth labs in Arkansas, but the meth problem is far bigger than the law.

“Meth is the biggest problem we face. It’s everywhere,” Sacco said.
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 7:45:53 PM EDT
Tighter regulation on cold pills and anhydrous amonia have only allowed the influx of higher grade cheap crystal from Mexico. Cut the supply all you want, the demand ain't going away any time soon.
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 7:47:17 PM EDT
does ice blow up when you make it? I figure since most meth heads are already idiots maybe they will eventually fuck up and blow themselves up, eventually solving the problem. I hear alot of poeple die from smoking ice the first time. hopefully its true, itll save alot of time.
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 8:00:54 PM EDT
If by die you mean get addicted and slowly kill themselves over the course of a decade while suckling all they can from the coffers of society... then yes they die. Seriously man thats about as bad of an anti drug rumor as telling kids that marijuana makes males infertile, if it was true there would be a hell of a lot of bodies. Not to mention telling teens that if they smoke weed their sperm wont make a baby the teenage mind processes this out to mean "i can get high and have sex with no consequences." BuUUT back to the point here. I bet that migrant they caught in ft smith hadnt even slept since he was deported before they caught him back again Ice isnt going away and I believe it is more pervasive in americas schools than many people even suspect. I think if authorties really wanted to get to stem the problem before it stops they would quit letting doctors prescribe rittalin/adderal to elementary age children like its goddamn pez. Good parenting raises good kids, not medication.
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 8:02:58 PM EDT
I hesitate to reveal this about myself, but oh well. I lived in Elpaso for a while and went to alot of raves. The main, sought after drug at the time was ecstacy. It was being brought from Amsterdam, and was plentiful. El Paso is a border town with Juarez, Mexico. When the cartels caught wind of the demand of MDMA, labs sprouted up like crazy in Mexico, and within a year no one could bring in any pills from anywhere that wasn't from Mexico. And where MDMA was plentiful before, they were limitless when the cartels began producing them, and the number of dealers rose at least 10 times, and i am not exaggerating, and as a result, they became cheap...... from 20-25 bucks a pill to 10-12 a piece. Even 5 bucks towards the end of my use (2 yrs ago) because so many more had been using them because of the cheap supply and the dealers were able to make so much money that they were able to deal cheap to people they knew. Yeah, i know, my sentences aren't structured properly and all that...... the preceding paragraph is my excuse
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 8:18:29 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 4/10/2006 8:35:07 PM EDT by fike]
I've read the article a few times now and I am more confused. Meth,crank,ice etc is all the same shit.

Meth labs in the area usually make small amounts of meth in powder form for the makers’ own use, said Sacco.
Bullshit, plain and simple.

I don't doubt that more meth is being brought in by illegals, but the article is full of misleading information.

The meth labs have never been in Fort Smith, they have always(the last 15 years at least)been across the border and in the sticks around the city.
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 8:25:14 PM EDT
Its been a while since I've heard of any methlabs blowing up, they were doing it pretty frequently a while back IIRC
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 8:33:15 PM EDT
THey are trying to imply that the speed from mexico is somehow more potent and more dangerous than the domesticaly produced methamphetamine. VERY hard to prove considering the illegal nature of the black market. The same way the government would like you to believe that the marijuana exported from british columbia is somehow more potent and thus more dangerous than the weed you older fellas might have pretended to inhale back in your younger days The real bottom line is that its a lot easier for meth to be produced in mass quantities in mexico where corrupt government officials and the military harbor the drug cartels. You want to make a lab to produce(and im pulling this # out of my ass here) 100 lbs of meth a week, Im guessing that will be hard to hide in any american town or city, and availability of cold pills has nothing to do with it. Its just flat out too large an operation to operate discreetly. Besides the cartels in mexico are probably buying pure psuodephedrin direct from chemical suppliers, and they can cut the crap and get down to business so the speak. The war on drugs should be renamed "the war on the economic theory of supply and demand."
Link Posted: 4/10/2006 9:03:29 PM EDT
The thing I like about this is that it reveals the inherent laziness of the American Worker - the American Drug Worker, that is.

After all, the "undocumented pharmacist" from sunny Mejico is simply making the ice that the Lazy American Drug Worker is unable or unwilling to make.

Viva La Reconquista! Viva La Fox! Long live El Mucho Grande, El Senor Grande Stupido, El Presidente and Jefe-In-Chief Jorge Boosh!
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