U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

NCJRS Virtual Library

The Virtual Library houses over 235,000 criminal justice resources, including all known OJP works.
Click here to search the NCJRS Virtual Library

Renewal of Project North Star: Combined Effort Builds Clout Against Organized Crime

NCJ Number
Gazette Volume: 63 Issue: 4 Dated: 2002 Pages: 24-26
Brenda Zanin
Date Published
3 pages
This article reviews Project North Star (PNS), a program designed by Canadian and U.S. border patrol, customs officials, police officers, and government officials to reduce illegal activity between the two countries.
Project North Star (PNS) is the name of a multi-agency initiative, which first took shape in 1989 as a drug control strategy. It got off to a shaky start because funding was hard to come by, the focus was narrow, and the potential for wide-ranging participation on both sides of the border was not achieved. The PNS held a cross-border meeting in Chicago to come to terms with these various impediments, work out a clear structure, and establish membership criteria. The meeting was a success, and in January 2001, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed between the Attorney General of Canada and the Attorney General of the United States. The gathering in Chicago rallied growing support for the “new” PNS. Quad chairs assembled in a small meeting room prior to the opening of the conference to establish some basic elements of the renewed organization and make plans for its future. One difficult issue confronted by conference participants was the carrying of firearms by law enforcement across borders. RMCP officers who must cross into the United States regularly are not permitted to carry firearms out of their country. This compromises their security if a dangerous situation should arise. In addition to addressing cross border issues, this article examined the ecstasy trade in Ontario and the increase in the heroin trade in Chicago.