Winning Oklahoma's war on drugs

Thursday, August 5th 2004, 4:45 pm
By: News On 6

Oklahoma’s war on drugs is a never ending battle, but it also seems the Sooner State is having a number of victories.

News on 6 crime reporter Lori Fullbright, who was at a statewide awards banquet in Oklahoma City, checks up on how Oklahoma is doing in the war on drugs.

Drug agents say one of the most significant recent victories is the new law that makes people show an ID and sign for any product that contains pseudoephedrine, one of the key ingredients in making methamphetamine. The Bureau of Narcotics says Oklahoma had a 10,000% increase in meth labs since 1994, but since the law passed two months ago, they’ve seen a 70% decrease in meth labs.

Another victory is in the area of marijuana, still the number one most abused illegal drug in the state. Officers used to confiscate around 500 plants a year, but now with stepped up efforts and choppers and planes in use, officers are getting 5,000 plants a year.

The big problem Oklahoma now has is all the marijuana coming in from Mexico. Before the NAFTA agreement, customs agents searched one in every 2,100 trucks, now; they search one in every 25,000.

And, certainly more people in Oklahoma are going to jail for drugs than ever before. In 1992, around 8,500 people were arrested for drug offenses. 10 years later, that number is at 22,000.

The state's cream of the crop of drug officers and prosecutors were honored in Oklahoma City for their efforts in keeping illegal drugs out of Oklahoma and away from our children and families.