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Drug Trends

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South Florida Drug Trafficking

  • Primary area for money laundering and drug trafficking in the United States
  • Principle thoroughfare for cocaine and heroin into the U.S. and Canada
  • Drugs smuggled into the state by various means
    • Private boats
    • Small planes
    • Cargo freight
    • Interstate highways
  • The Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office Narcotics Interdiction Unit battles drug trafficking by the following methods:
    • Highway Traffic Interdiction
    • Airport Enforcement
    • Parcel Inspections



  • Primary drug threat in South Florida
  • Most cocaine originates in South America
  • Recently, Mexican organizations have increased smuggling activities into South Florida



  • Top source of funding for street gangs



  • South Florida is #1 U.S. point of entry for South American heroin.
  • Primarily smuggled into U.S. via cruise ships via body carry.
  • Highest concentration of use is Orlando.


MDMA (Ecstasy)

  • These “club drugs” are readily available.
  • Incorrectly thought of as a “safe” drug by it’s users… just a few uses can alter dopamine levels in the brain causing life-long depression symptoms.
  • Often used in conjunction with other drugs



  • Cultivators of active grows can yield $20-30K every few months
  • Popular all over the state—mostly in rural areas.
  • Often very dangerous due to poor electrical wiring needed for lighting.


Pharmaceutical Diversion

  • Hydrocodone, vicodin, oxycodone, xanax and methadone top the list.
  • Sold via the internet and illegal sales from doctors and staff.
  • Users obtain drugs via forged prescriptions and Dr. Shopping.



  • cocaine_th.jpg
    Powder Cocaine (Courtesy DEA)
  • crack_cocaine_th.jpg
    Crack Cocaine (Courtesy DEA)
  • heroin powder_th.jpg
    Heroin Powder (Courtesy DEA)
  • hydrocodone_th.jpg
    Hydrocodone (Courtesy DEA)
  • lsd_blotter_full_sheet_th.jpg
    LSD Blotter Paper (Courtesy DEA)
  • marijuana_th.jpg
    Marijuana (Courtesy DEA)
  • methampetamine_th.jpg
    Methamphetamine (Ice) (Courtesy DEA)
  • Oxy80_th.jpg
    Oxycodone 80mg (Courtesy DEA)
  • white_tablet_mitsubishi_logo_lsd_th.jpg
    MDMA (Ecstasy) (Courtesy DEA)