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California Border Alliance Group Drug Market Analysis 2009

NCJ Number
Date Published
March 2009
24 pages
This overview of the illicit drug situation in the California Border Alliance Group's (CBAG's) region of responsibility highlights significant trends and law enforcement concerns related to the trafficking and abuse of illicit drugs.
The CBAG region consists of San Diego and Imperial Counties and encompasses California's entire 140-mile portion of the U.S.-Mexico border, which is a principal drug smuggling corridor for illicit drugs that enter the country from Mexico. Mexican ice methamphetamine availability declined in the CBAG region in 2008, likely as a result of enhanced constituent chemical control restrictions and law enforcement efforts in Mexico, as well as increased methamphetamine seizures at the California border with Mexico. Heroin seizures along the U.S.-Mexico border in California increased significantly from 2007 to 2008, likely due to reduced opium poppy eradication and expanded heroin production in Mexico. The increase in indoor marijuana production in the CBAG region has resulted from an increasing demand for higher potency marijuana, both regionally and nationally. Drug-related violence along the California-Mexico border is escalating due to conflict among Mexican drug trafficking organizations (DTOs) battling for control of major drug smuggling routes in Baja California and by clashes between DTOs and Mexican military and law enforcement personnel in counterdrug operations. Bulk cash smuggling to Mexico is the primary method used by traffickers to move drug proceeds from the CBAG region to Mexico, largely because of the area's proximity to the U.S.-Mexico border and limited inspections of southbound traffic by United States and Mexican law enforcement officers, as well as the relative ease with which cash can be placed into the Mexican financial systems. 2 figures, 5 tables, and a listing of data sources for this report