opium poppies Export crop. pulso slp

Poppy cultivation up 50% in Mexico: DEA

Drug enforcement chief says heroin consumption, fatal overdoses up as well

There has been a 50% increase in opium poppy cultivation in Guerrero and the Golden Triangle region — which takes in parts of Durango, Sinaloa and Chihuahua, triggering a big rise in consumption and fatal overdoses, U.S. lawmakers were told yesterday.

The acting deputy administrator of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) told a committee of the House of Representatives that heroin in the U.S. is coming primarily from Mexico.

Jack Riley said Mexican drug cartels are competing against other international suppliers by developing new techniques to produce highly refined, white-powder heroin, in addition to their standard “black tar and brown powder heroin,” as it is known.

He also cited “alarming” increases in the number of fatal overdoses: three times what they were in 2010. In addition, the Mexican product not only has a lower street price but its potency is far greater than what was seen 10 years ago.

Riley said powerful and dangerous transnational organizations such as Joaquín Guzmán’s Sinaloa Cartel are producing heroin with “great sophistication.”

The drug traffickers have recognized a business opportunity in the large number of people in the U.S. with an addiction to prescription pain relievers, which are more costly than heroin.

In a statement to a Senate committee last month, Riley said heroin seizures at the Mexico-U.S. border more than doubled between 2009 and 2013,

Source: El Universal (sp)

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