Mexican drug cartels are taking advantage of America’s war on drugs, including on American-made methamphetamine, by flooding US cities with exceptionally cheap, yet incredibly potent meth that has been made in factory-like “superlabs.”
While Mexican meth is nothing new to the US drug trade, the Drug Enforcement Agency believes that it now accounts for almost 80 percent of the meth sold in America, reports Yahoo! News.
Not only is it extremely prevalent in the country, but is also as much as 90 percent pure, meaning that it can offer a faster, more intense, and longer-lasting high than most other meth. St. Louis DEA agent Jim Shroba stated:
“These are sophisticated, high-tech operations in Mexico that are operating with extreme precision. They’re moving it out the door as fast as they can manufacture it.”
Mexican drug cartels are expanding in the US meth market the same way they previously did with the heroin market — by developing an inexpensive, yet very potent, form of the drug. They then send this drug through the same pipeline already used to transport marijuana and cocaine into the country.
The Associated Press notes that the meth made in Mexico has a clearer, more glassy appearance than the more crudely produced formulas. It often resembles fragments of ice that usually have a clear or bluish-white color. Denver DEA agent Paul Roach added, “You can look at it and see it has a much more pure look.”
The rise of Mexican meth in the American marketplace doesn’t mean that American labs are gone. Instead, the number of labs in the US continues to rise, despite the fact that federal, state, and local laws have placed heavy restrictions on the purchase of cold and allergy pills that contain pseudophedrine (a major component in the most common recipe for meth).
The regulations in the US have forced meth labs to become smaller, with many using the ingredients in a 2-liter bottle, making just enough for personal use. Meanwhile, the Mexican drug cartels are able to produce methamphetamine using a factory-like setting with expert chemists to help in their manufacture.