The Trump White House has reversed the trend of recent administrations from being aggressive on drugs that are flowing into the United States. With the decreasing amounts of illicit drugs that are coming across the border on land, law enforcement authorities are finding more and more drugs at sea.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions visited San Diego Wednesday to draw attention to this issue, just another one that President Trump has been criticized for by criminal justice experts and others.
At a morning news conference at the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, Sessions lauded the U.S. Coast Guard, which has intercepted a record 206.4 metric tons of cocaine, or more than 455,000 pounds, valued at more than $6 billion, at sea so far this fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30.
That is about 5 metric tons greater than the amount interdicted last year.
“We are facing a tremendous challenge,” he said. “In 2015, 52,000 people died from drug overdoses in this country, numbers the like of which we’ve never, never, ever seen before.”
Since taking office Sessions — a former U.S. attorney in Alabama who referenced his job prosecuting drug crimes in the 1970s during the news conference — has been the point person in the Trump administration’s efforts to return to an era of aggressive federal prosecutions of drug and other crimes, and away from the reform-minded efforts of the Obama administration.
While the moves to decriminalize drug users and instead focusing on rehabilitation and treatment definitely has its merits, the aggressive policies to stop the large flow of cocaine into the country from the drug cartels is another.
And while the legalizing of marijuana is one thing, the cocaine coming up through the Colombia-Mexico pipeline is completely another. Although as long as the demand of the American public is there, then there will be drug lords trying to make a buck distributing illicit drugs to those that want it.
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