Why Georgia Is A Key Route for Marijuana Trafficking


“On the scale of criminal productivity, marijuana is king,” Jack Killorin of the federal high intensity drug office in Atlanta tells the Columbus (GA) Ledger-Enquirer. “Given the widespread use of marijuana in our society, the drug — day in and day out — generates huge amounts of money.” Sgt. Rick Stinson, a Columbus police officer in charge of the Metro Narcotics Task Force, said drug traffickers “don’t run some of the risks you run with cocaine. They would rather get caught with 500 pounds of marijuana than 5 kilos of cocaine.”

The reason is that the penalties are less. A person caught with the 500 pounds of marijuana faces up to a mandatory minimum sentence of 5 years in prison and a $100,000 fine. The person caught with 400 grams of cocaine faces a minimum of 25 years in prison and $1 million fine. The drug is being moved by organized Mexican cartels to Atlanta for distribution up and down the East Coast. “Atlanta has moved up to a source city for the eastern side of the country,” Stinson said. “One of the changes we have seen is more drugs are leaving Atlanta and going into Florida than vice versa.” Said Lt. Bill Trivelpiece of the Atlanta Police Department narcotics unit, “There are numerous interstates that converge in Atlanta. Our business life in Atlanta thrives on our transportation network. Unfortunately, the drug transportation thrives on those same lifelines.”

Link: http://www.ledger-enquirer.com/news/story/478244.html

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