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UN drug agency won't take stand on executions

Posted on March 2nd, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , , , .

South East AsiaThe UN International Narcotics Control Board (INCB) said Feb. 28 that it is taking no view on the Thai government's plans to speed up the execution of convicted drug traffickers. The agency said it neither supports nor opposes the death penalty for drug-related offenses. "We are an impartial body and respect the rule of law and jurisdiction of countries," said INCB Thai board member Viroj Sumyai. 

Mexico busts more Sinaloa kingpins —but still not El Chapo

Posted on February 25th, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

MexicoMexican federal police on Feb. 14 announced the arrest in Culiacán, Sinaloa, of Jaime Herrera Herrera AKA "El Viejito" (Little Old Man), said to be top meth manufacturer and distributor for the Sinaloa Cartel. (NYT, Feb. 14) The bust came ten days after the arrest in León, Guanajuato, of José Antonio Torres Marrufo AKA "El Marrufo"—said to be leader of the Gente Nueva gang, armed wing of the Sinaloa Cartel. Prosecutors suspect Marrufo of ordering the 2009 attack on a drug treatment clinic in Ciudad Juárez in which 18 people were killed. The cartel's maximum boss, Joaquín Guzmán AKA "El Chapo" (Shorty), still remains at large. (BBC News, Crónica de Hoy, RTT, Feb. 14; El Diario, Ciudad Juárez, Feb. 6; BBC News, Feb. 4)

Malaysia: "red alert" against drug trafficking

Posted on January 3rd, 2012 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , .

South East AsiaMalaysian airport authorities have been placed on a "red alert" against drug trafficking following a surge over the past year in arrests and drug seizures. Customs officers are screening all inbound passengers to Kuala Lumpur International Airport. The airport's customs director M. Govinden said 195 kilograms (430 pounds) of drugs had been seized and 33 people arrested at the city's two air terminals so far this year, despite Malaysia's tough anti-drug laws which include a mandatory death sentence for traffickers.

Meth madness behind Mekong massacre?

Posted on November 1st, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , .

South East AsiaNine Thai soldiers turned themselves in Oct. 29, three weeks after a deadly attack on two Chinese freighters on the Mekong River near the Burmese border. Thirteen Chinese crew members were killed in the attack, their bodies found floating in the river. News accounts in Thailand indicate the freighters were carrying nearly a million amphetamine pills. The army commander in in Thailand's northern Chiang Rai province, Major Gen. Prakarn Chonlayuth, speculated that Burma-based Shan warlord Nor Kham had arranged the execution of the 13 Chinese seamen in a dispute over trafficking routes. (Asia Sentinel, Oct. 31; BBC News, Oct. 29)

US tilting to Sinaloa Cartel in Mexico's narco wars?

Posted on September 22nd, 2011 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , , , , , .

MexicoThe US Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on Sept. 21 imposed Kingpin Act sanctions on four Colombian nationals and 12 companies said to be linked to Joaquín Guzmán Loera AKA "El Chapo"—head of Mexico's Sinaloa Cartel. Guzmán faces charges in the US, but remains at large. (WSJ Corruption Currents blog, Sept. 20) The move comes amid increasing charges that US law enforcement—as well as the Mexican government is favoring the Sinaloa Cartel in Mexico's bloody narco wars.

Cannabis use up; meth, coke down: study

Posted on September 9th, 2011 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , .

cannabisCannabis is increasingly the drug of choice among young adults in the US, while methamphetamine use  is dropping, according to a national survey released Sept. 8 by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). Overall, 8.9% of the US population or 22.6 million people aged 12 and older used illicit drugs in 2010, up from 8.7% in 2009 and 8% in 2008, the study finds according to Reuters. Cannabis use appears to be driving the increase, with some 17.4 million—or 6.9% of the population—saying they used marijuana in 2010, up from 14.4 million or 5.8% of the population in 2007.

Mexican cartels in Emerald Triangle: real or hype?

Posted on September 1st, 2011 by Bill Weinberg and tagged , , , , , , , , .

CaliforniaAn Aug. 31 report on PBS NewsHour provides mixed indications on recent hype about the supposed presence of Mexican drug cartels in the cannabis trade of Northern California's Emerald Triangle—which has now been officially designated a High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area by the federal government. In the Mendocino National Forest, which has seen unprecedented raids this year, 10 Mexican nationals are among the approximately 100 arrested. Last year, Mendocino County saw a record-breaking number of armed confrontations during marijuana raids—"many with Mexican nationals with suspected links to drug gangs across the border." Two Mexican nationals were killed in last year's raids—one, named Mariano Fernández, reportedly after he aimed an "AK-47-type rifle" at a police SWAT team.

Drug Czar implicates medical marijuana in increased drug abuse

Posted on September 19th, 2010 by Global Ganja Report and tagged , , , , , .

cannabisThe results of a national survey on drug use and health were issued Sept. 15 by the federal government, noting a surge in the use of marijuana and other drugs such as ecstasy and methamphetamine. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) of the US Department of Health and Human Services publishes the annual study, which is often used by the "drug czar" to highlight the status of the so-called "War on Drugs." Although the government claims that prescription drug abuse is its highest priority, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) took the opportunity to rail against medical marijuana use.

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