Comments Off on Missouri Kicks Off Meth-Busting Campaign in Ladue, Targeting ‘Smurfing’

“Smurfing” is buying cold and allergy medicines containing pseudoephedrine in order to sell it to meth cooks. Attorney General Chris Koster joined forces with public officials to kick off this effort in the St. Louis region.

KMOX’s Kevin Killeen wanted to know what St. Louis Chief of Police Sam Dotson was doing in Ladue. Another reporter asked Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster if a press conference targeting in Ladue targeting the meth problem meant methamphetamine had found its way to this part of the county.

No, Koster said.

“Our meth problem is all over the state,” he said at a conference at Ladue Pharmacy Thursday to launch an anti-smurfing campaign throughout St. Louis. “Ladue Pharmacy was just gracious enough to be the host of our announcement.”

“Smurfing” is the practice of purchasing cold and allergy medicines containing pseudo-ephedrine for the purpose of selling to methamphetamine cooks. A parade of public officials spoke before the cameras, creating a level of awareness to fight this problem.

Koster was flanked by Chief Dotson; Ron Fitzwater of the Missouri Pharmacy Association, Carlos Guitierrez of the Consumer Healthcare Products Association and Ladue Pharmacy owner Rick Williams.

The attorney general has teamed with these officials to create a public awareness campaign to combat smurfing.

“Missouri law enforcement officials will tell you that smurfing is one of the biggest challenges they face in the battle against meth production and abuse,” said Koster.

Koster thinks public education is an essential step in the fight against meth cooks and dealers.

This is the law in Missouri: “If you purchase the ingredients in the state of Missouri with the intent to produce meth, you are guilty of a Class D felony. Your involvement rises to an additional level where you can be charged as an accomplice, then you will be guilty of a Class B felony.”

Some think the ingredients should be sold on a prescription-only basis. Koster said that people involved in law enforcement have differing views on how that should be handled. Koster feels the dialogue should continue as everyone takes steps forward on this very important issue.

“Missouri is the No. 1 state in the nation in methamphetamine production and effects every corner of the state of Missouri. “Everyone from local pharmacies to big box stores is involved in the sale of these products,” he said.

Chief Dotson knows first hand how terrible these products can be abused.

“Those of us involved with law enforcement in St. Louis have seen the effects of meth first hand. We are familiar with the terrible consequences associated with smurfing,” concluded the police chief.


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