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AN IRANIAN refugee who was caught smuggling 51 packages of methamphetamine into WA after one burst in his bowel has lost an appeal against his sentence.

Sam Mousavi was sentenced to six years and eight months’ jail for trying to smuggle the drugs internally on a flight from Dubai to Perth in November 2011.

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The father-of-one, who was granted asylum in Australia several years ago, became ill on the flight where it was alleged he alerted passengers that he was carrying “ice”.

When the flight landed he was rushed to hospital where a CT scan revealed a total of 51 packages with a street value of $132,000 located in his stomach, small intestine and lower intestine.

He was found guilty of trying to smuggle the drugs into the country last year.

In June, Mousavi lodged an appeal against his sentence arguing it was “manifestly excessive” and did not take into account his personal circumstances.

Today the WA Court of Appeal handed down its decision.

During his original District Court trial, Mousavi argued he had been forced to smuggle the 51 packets of methamphetamine to pay off a $20,000 debt he owed to an Iranian loan shark.

He claimed he borrowed the money to pay for his wedding to his wife.

At the start of the trial, Mousavi claimed that he was knocked unconscious and threatened at gunpoint and told that unless he took drugs to Australia he would be killed.

He also claimed the loan shark made him swallow a number of packages and that some larger packages were inserted into his backside, and was told that if he did not co-operate his parents would be killed.

But it later emerged the asylum seeker-turned-tiler had a gambling debt, owed $20,000 on his credit card and that his tiling business was failing.

A District Court jury found him guilty in November 2013.

He received six years and eight months and is eligible for parole after four years.

Today the WA Court of Appeal dismissed his application against sentence saying it felt the length was not unjust. The maximum penalty for smuggling methamphetamine into Australia is 25 years.

“Having regard to the maximum penalty for the offence, the circumstances in which it was committed, the range of sentences customarily imposed and the personal circumstances of the appellant, it cannot be reasonably argued that the sentence imposed was unreasonable or plainly unjust,” Justices David Newnes and Robert Mazza said.

 

 

 

 

http://www.perthnow.com.au/news/western-australia/jailed-iranian-refugee-sam-mousavi-who-tried-to-smuggle-methamphetamine-into-wa-loses-appeal/story-fnhocxo3-1227060347888?nk=4ae76864b2d2f733b45ed87add9e2dcd

 

Four Chinese nationals have been charged with possession of drugs worth an estimated HK$1.2 billion in the Philippines, the country’s Department of Justice announced on Monday.

meth-seized

The suspects were arrested during a raid on a warehouse on Friday in the Pampanga provincial capital San Fernando.

Drug enforcement agency chief Arturo Cacdac Jnr said police found around 460kg of crystal methamphetamine, as well as large amounts of hydrochloride and ephedrine, marking one of the biggest drug busts of the year.

Cacdac described the case, which has been in the works for more than six months, as a “big blow to syndicates”.

The four Chinese suspects, three men and one woman, have been identified by police as Jason Lee, Willy Yap and Near Tan from Xiamen and Ying Huang from Fujian. They underwent inquest proceedings accompanied by a state-provided defence attorney on Monday.

Last month, a court in Manila sentenced three Chinese nationals to life in prison after they were arrested inside a methamphetamine laboratory in 2010.

The methamphetamine trade in the Philippines is believed to have links to Mexican organised crime. In February, a raid on a small operation in Lipa city, south of Manila, swept up three suspected members of the deadly Sinaloa cartel.

That raid came after months of speculation that the cartels were moving into the Philippines.

“The Mexicans are already here,” drug task force chief Bartolome Tobias told the South China Morning Post in January, adding that he believed they were getting help from “Chinese drug syndicates“.

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.scmp.com/news/asia/article/1593717/four-chinese-suspects-charged-philippines-carrying-460kg-crystal-meth

 

The National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA) in the eastern Nigerian state of Anambra, has raised concern over the increasing production of methamphetamine in the state.

an-NDLEA-official-in-a-sealed-methamphetamine-laba

Methamphetamine is a powerful, highly addictive stimulant that affects the central nervous system.

Mr Sule Momodu, State Commander of the agency, told newsmen in Awka on Monday that the national headquarters recently intercepted a shipment, which was traced to Awka, the state capital.

He said that the agency was working seriously with other security agencies to get those involved in the business.

Momodu said that Gov.Willie Obiano recently approved N500, 000 to anyone who would provide information on the clandestine activities of laboratories where illegal methamphetamine was being produced.

He said that the governor had also approved N15m for the agency to use in the cleaning up of illegal methamphetamine factory, discovered in 2012 at Nanka in Orumba North Local Government Area of the state.

Momodu commended the state government for being the first to carry out Environmental Impact Assessment on the facility, where large methamphetamine laboratory was discovered

The Commander said that the substance, which had strong smell, was being produced late night in deserted buildings, adding that its waste product was hazardous.

 

 

 

 

http://thenewsnigeria.com.ng/2014/09/15/ndlea-hunts-methamphetamine-producers-in-anambra/

 

Three Elizabethtown residents have been indicted on a wanton endangerment charge after police say a 17-month-old in their care tested positive for meth. Joseph Roy Culley Jr., Jessica Marie Humphrey and Sherrie Ann Smith, aka Sherrie Sprowls, are each indicted on a charge of first-degree wanton endangerment.

Smith has an added indictment of first-degree felony offender. In July, Elizabethtown police responded to a call at Hardin Memorial Hospital on a possible child abuse case.

 

In 2003, then-Wright County Sheriff Gary Miller estimated that 80 percent of the prisoners in the Wright County Jail were there because of methamphetamine.

From manufacturers to sellers to users to those who committed crimes to help support their habit, it was a drug that was gaining a stronghold in Wright County a ruining lives.

It was this concern that created MEADA (Methamphetamine Education And Drug Aware) in 2004 – a project that would prove to be extremely successful in banding communities together to limit the spread of the drug use in Wright County.

Things have improved significantly in that regard over the decade since, but current Sheriff Joe Hagerty said the meth epidemic was something law enforcement had never seen before.

“Everything back then was about meth,” Hagerty said. “That was probably an accurate number. You had the people who were making it, selling it or using it, but just about every robbery, mail theft or home invasion involved someone who was addicted to meth and needed to get money to pay for their habit.”

Wright County Attorney Tom Kelly was one of the founding members of MEADA and, just as law enforcement was getting deluged with prisoners, so too was the criminal justice system because the meth problem was showing no signs of loosening its grip on Wright County.

“When we created MEADA back in 2004, I came up with a little saying – meth robs your liberty, kidnaps your soul and holds you prisoner,” Kelly said. “It was a major issue. There was a time during that period where 72 percent of kids that were put in a foster care setting or out of home placement was because of methamphetamine. That’s a huge number.”

What made methamphetamine such a problem was that users weren’t the standard idea of those who would be drug addicts.

It happened to young, old, wealthy, poor, men, women. It truly ran that gamut of society.

“It happened with all cross-sections of the community,” Hagerty said. “Socioeconomic lines were crossed. People who had been successful that had strong families. It was a drug like no other we had ever dealt with. It was truly the devil’s drug. It would grab a user on just one use and the addictive power of that drug was unbelievable. It was a scourge”

One of the primary problems in Wright County was that, back in 2002-03, the county was a hotbed for meth labs. In that era, it wasn’t unusual to discover an abandoned meth lab or two every week.

Those cooking meth had to do it in a wide open area because of the smell and the hazardous chemicals used in its production. At first, the county was taken a bit by surprise when uncovering a lab, but, as time went by, the problem kept growing exponentially.

“It came into Wright County extremely fast,” Hagerty said. “It went from being ‘what is methamphetamine?’ to having a full-blown problem within a matter of months. When we saw how fast it was spreading and how horrible the consequences of this drug was. That was the genesis of MEADA in Wright County.”

One of the turning points came in 2006, when Minnesota passed a state law that took ephedrine – an active ingredient in meth – and put it behind drug store counter and making people who bought drugs like Sudafed to present identification.

By taking the main ingredient away from those cooking meth, it became difficult to manufacture locally. But, it didn’t stop there.

MEADA was so successful in combating meth addiction because it brought all the key players in communities together. Individually, law enforcement, school districts and parents could try to combat the problem. But, as a united front, they created power in numbers.

“We got buy-ins throughout the county,” Hagerty said. “Just about every school and city got involved and, what made it so successful here was that we got parents and families involved to educate them on the dangers and the warning signs. You never know how successful a program you’re trying to run will be because you need people to buy in for it to be successful. We had that with MEADA.”

Town meetings were standing room only as those looking to help in the fight or just curious to see what all the fuss was about banded together to make a difference. Even those on the front lines were shocked at how unified communities became.

“It was amazing how the public turned out for the town hall meetings,” Kelly said. “We had a meeting in Rogers that had more than 1,000 people attend. I think because we saturated the county with education and information that it helped. We were asked to give our template to other counties and even other states to see what we did that worked because they saw our program as a successful way to combat the problem.”

Over the last several years, the meth epidemic has waned.

It’s still a problem, but now is being replaced by the influx of designer drugs, increasingly potent marijuana and the unfortunate comeback of heroin as a drug of choice for users.

While MEADA’s initial mission statement centered on methamphetamine, the program has branched out and evolved as new drugs problems emerge.

“MEADA has done quite a bit over the last 10 years and continues to do so,” Kelly said. “Last year, it served more than 7,000 community members. While meth isn’t the problem to the extent it was 10 years ago, the objectives of MEADA are still in place today and we’re still fighting to protect children and families.”

In the war on drugs, it would seem that drugs is a foe that won’t go away and keeps drawing in new recruits.

Ten years after MEADA showed that citizens banding together can fight the war on their home turf, it would be naïve to think that drugs won’t be part of the culture of our society. But Hagerty hopes to never see the epidemic that methamphetamine caused a decade ago and why MEADA was formed.

“We’re always on the lookout for the next drug that’s coming down the line,” Hagerty said. “With the synthetic drugs that are out there, there will always be something, but I’m not sure we’re going to run into something that was so rampant and destructive to people’s lives than methamphetamine was 10 years ago.”

 

 

 

 

http://monticellotimes.com/2014/09/14/wright-countys-war-against-meth-started-with-key-awareness-project/

 

An Asheville woman has been charged with running a meth lab in her home.

The Buncombe County Anticrime Task Force arrested Kelly Shirlynn Portch, 27, of High Oaks Drive on Saturday, according to warrants filed at the Buncombe County Magistrate’s Office.

She is charged with manufacturing methamphetamine, possession of the chemicals to create the drug, and possession of drug paraphernalia, including pipes and syringes. She is also charged with using her house to make and distribute drugs.

She is being held in the Buncombe County Detention Center with a secured bond set at $205,000 on all charges.

In another drug-related arrest:

William Alexander Imus, 25, of Francis Street, Asheville has been charged with possession of 26 hits of LSD, trafficking more than 200 grams of MDMA, conspiracy to traffic drugs, possession of marijuana, possession of 65 units of Xanax, and using his house to sell drugs from. He is being held in the Buncombe County Detention Center with a secured bond set at $12,500.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.citizen-times.com/story/news/local/2014/09/14/asheville-woman-charged-running-meth-lab-home/15638171/

 

Bond was set at $5,000 Thursday for a Duncan woman who was found to have a syringe loaded with methamphetamine and another bag of methamphetamine in her backpack.

Duncan Police Officer Nicholas Dziewa said Amanda Jennings, 23, was walking on 1st Street, then turned around when Dziewa passed her, so he turned around and asked to search her backpack.

“I asked Jennings if I could search her backpack, she replied that she would prefer that I did not because she didn’t want to go to jail,” Dziewa said.

After Dziewa asked a second time, Jennings emptied her bag on the hood of Dziewa’s patrol car, according to an incident report.

“I located a syringe in a blue pencil bag and a purple plastic baggie containing a clear, crystal-like substance… in a yellow Play-Doh container,” Dziewa said.

Jennings was arrested for possession of a controlled dangerous substance and taken to the Stephens County Jail.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.duncanbanner.com/news/article_c5e60908-3ba8-11e4-ab9d-335bb9524e5f.html

 

An Adelaide woman allegedly high on meth crashed a stolen hire car while two children without seatbelts sat in the back.

The suspended driver rear-ended another car in North Adelaide on Friday night, and police drug tests showed she was on methamphetamine, police say.

Two children under the age of five were unrestrained in the back seat, and were taken to the Women’s and Children’s Hospital with minor injuries.

The woman’s car turned out to be a hire car she had not returned, and which had been reported as stolen.

The 33-year-old Woodville Gardens woman was also wanted over the alleged illegal use of a motor vehicle in Mount Gambier in July.

She was charged with driving without due care, dangerous driving, two counts of aggravated acts to endanger life, two counts of failing to ensure child safely restrained, driving while suspended, two counts of illegal use, drug driving and possess prescription medication without a prescription.

She has been bailed to appear in the Adelaide Magistrates Court on November 10.

 

 

 

 

https://au.news.yahoo.com/sa/a/24985202/sa-woman-on-meth-crashes-stolen-hire-car/

 

    SYDNEY (AP) — Two Canadian-Vietnamese dual citizens have been charged with smuggling heroin and methamphetamine worth 75 million Australian dollars ($68 million) hidden in a consignment of frozen fish fillets shipped from Kuala Lumpur to Sydney, officials said Monday.

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The men, aged 57 and 55, appeared in a Sydney court on Friday on multiple charges related to the shipment of 88 kilograms (194 pounds) of heroin and 21 kilograms (46 pounds) of methamphetamine, a joint statement by five law enforcement and border protection agencies said. They face life in prison if convicted.

The 57-year-old was identified as a suspected drug smuggler when he arrived in Sydney early this month, the statement said.

He was linked to a shipping container packed with 1.7 metric tons (1.9 tons) of frozen fish that was intercepted on the Sydney waterfront last week, the statement said.

Officials found that ice packs hidden beneath the fish were filled with liquid forms of the illicit drugs.

The drugs were replaced with harmless substances before the men took delivery. They were arrested in western Sydney, the statement said.

The statement did not reveal the men’s names or say whether they entered pleas to the charges.

http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2014/sep/14/2-men-charged-over-68-million-drug-haul-in-sydney/

Authorities seize 109kg of drugs hidden inside fish

ALMOST 110kg of methamphetamine and heroin has been seized by Australian Federal Police after a shipment came through a New South Wales port hidden inside pallets of frozen fish.

Two men have now been charged by the Joint Organized Crime Group for attempting to bring 88kg of heroin and 21kg of methamphetamine into Australia.

The team is made up of officers from NSW Police, AFP, Customs and Border Protection, NSW Crime Commission and the Australian Crime Commission.

The investigation to target the two men began earlier this month after a 57-year-old Vietnamese Canadian man turned up in Australia after Customs received key intelligence.

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A 55-year-old was also charged.

Customs intercepted three pallets of frozen fish inside polystyrene boxes that had come from Kuala Lumpur.

Officers found ice packs containing “clear and brown liquids” were hidden beneath the fish.

The brown liquid was found to contain heroin and the clear mixture contained methamphetamine.

On September 9, authorities swapped out the drugs then let the consignment go on its way.

The next day, police believe these two men tried to take delivery.

AFP and NSW Police officers used two search warrants in the Sydney suburb of Fairfield, where police report finding a “heavy duty press” that police believe is used to compress bricks of heroin.

Both men face two charges to trying to possess heroin and methamphetamine.

The 57-year-old also faces two extra charges for attempting to import the drugs.

NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione said organized crime groups are motivated purely by greed and self-interest.

“Organized crime groups prey on the vulnerable and leech from the law-abiding majority,” Commissioner Scipione said.

“We make no apologies for relentlessly hunting down those who shamelessly enhance their own lives by ruthlessly destroying others.

 

 

 

http://www.frasercoastchronicle.com.au/news/authorities-seize-109kg-drugs-hidden-inside-fish/2386736/

 

Police on Sunday arrested a man and a woman and seized 240,000 methamphetamine pills in their possession at a checkpoint in Ban Nasan district of Surat Thani province.

Pol Lt Gen Panya Mamen, the Region 8 Provincial Police chief, identified the two at a press conference as Ahammad Suepae-ing 46, and Sarinya Sakhon, 32, both of Narathiwat province.

He said the two were arrested after a pick-up truck they were travelling in was stopped for a search at a checkpoint at the Yang Ung intersection on Highway 41 in tambon Thachi of Ban Nasan district.

The police manning the checkpoint cut open a spare tyre on the back of the pick-up and found 240,000 methamphetamine pills hidden inside it.

The two allegedly confessed to have received  taken the drugs from a man called Dam at the Tesco Lotus store on Rama 2 road in Bangkok.  They said they were to be paid 200,000 baht upon delivering the methamphetamine to Yala.

 

 

 

 

http://www.bangkokpost.com/most-recent/432353/methamphetamine-found-hidden-in-spare-wheel-en-route-to-yala

 

Jessica Tucker’s inability to shake her meth habit ultimately led to the 28-year-old’s death.

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Alane Tucker, pauses as she talks about how her daughter Jessica died at 28 in Pittsburgh, Pa. during an interview at her home in East Sparta

 

 

 

 

Her parents say they turned their back on her when drugs were more important to her than anything else. Over the years, she had made their lives a living hell.

Additionally, they needed to protect Jessica’s little girl, who was with them. So who could blame them for turning a blind eye? They blame themselves.

Jessica’s mother, Alane Tucker, recently told me that she and her husband, Randy, should have made sure she knew they were there for her.

“We made a grave error. Yes, we struggled for years. Yes, we did everything that we thought we could. Yes, at the time it seemed right — but death changes everything,” she said, mincing no words.

On Tuesday, Alane will be speaking at the Meth Lab Community Forum in Akron. The message: Be a parent, not your kid’s friend.

Jessica was a brilliant child. At 14½, she graduated from high school. At 15, she was enrolled at the University of Akron. When she applied for jobs, employers hired her, even though the positions were more appropriate for someone much older. She was breezing through life.

“She had the world wrapped around her little finger,” explained Alane, who confessed that because she was an executive for a large international company, she tried to be her daughter’s pal to compensate for the time she spent working.

But when Alane suspected her teenage daughter was abusing drugs, she resigned her position to keep a closer eye on her. Still, in her early 20s, Jessica discovered methamphetamine.

The man who was her daughter’s meth cook, Alane explained, drove Jessica from Akron to a vacant apartment in Pennsylvania where he set up a very primitive meth lab. In February 2010, he abandoned her there, taking her car, phone and clothes. During one of those history-breaking snowstorms, Jessica headed outdoors.

“She was found wandering around Pennsylvania in her pink pajamas trying to find someone to let her use a phone. She went into a jewelry store and asked to use their phone,” the mother explained.

Overhearing Jessica’s conversation, the owner suspected the young woman was in some kind of trouble and phoned the police.

Officers followed Jessica back to the vacant apartment, where they found the lab. As she was being arrested, the malnourished Jessica fell down some stairs and was taken to the hospital. There, they discovered that the young woman had, over some period of time, sustained beatings that caused broken bones to her face and ribs, and even a stab wound.

So why hadn’t she left?

“You don’t leave your cook when you’re hooked on meth,” offered Alane. “And our door was locked … she had nowhere to go. I’m not sure she would have come, but we still needed her to know that the door was open.”

When the hospital released her, a police officer who sympathized with Jessica decided not to handcuff her. And as they walked toward the cruiser, Jessica ran away, across the parking lot.

Looking over a barrier and back again at the officer who was in pursuit, she slipped over the wall. Though the area appeared as if it had a gradual decline, it was much steeper, and Jessica fell 35 feet to the ground. Four hours later, she took her last breath.

No friend

While the meth wasn’t the direct cause of death, Alane said the events that Jessica’s cook set in motion led to it.

The 39-year-old man whom Alane identified as Jessica’s cook did not face charges in the young woman’s death. Still, he is serving a 12-year sentence for the illegal manufacturing of drugs.

There’s a delicate balance between enabling a troubled soul and keeping communication open. And though I reminded Alane that she did what was right at the time, she flinched — explaining that she and Randy are tortured for having kept their distance from Jessica, whose daughter, Claire, is now 10.

“You have to almost make yourself numb because you can’t bear the torment. And so you have to close it off and shut it out because the torment never leaves,” she said. “I have a … little girl to raise. When you are given a different chance, you do things differently. This one is much more sheltered. This one will not have the freedoms that Jessica did. This one is not given the things that Jessica was given.”

Again, the message: Don’t be your child’s buddy.

“I will never be Claire’s friend,” promised Alane. “I will always be Grandma who will always, always, be there guiding her.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.ohio.com/news/top-stories/kim-hone-mcmahan-meth-leads-to-young-woman-s-death-mother-says-parents-should-not-be-child-s-friend-1.522182

 

Hopeless by anyone’s standards: Three felonies, hooked on meth, countless hours of jail time and enough mug shots to wallpaper one of her kid’s bedroom door.

With a rap sheet that reads like a hardened criminal, Alisha hit bottom in life – at thirty. But her impassioned cry for help after 14 years of methamphetamine addiction didn’t go unnoticed.

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On left, Alisha Bryans’ jail photo in 2001 and Alisha today on right. She lives drug-free and serves on the Elijah Family Homes board in addition to volunteering with Word of Faith church Bible studies at the Benton County jail.

Who heard her – and changed her life – is the last page in this story.

To see Alisha Bryans now, she could pass for a typical “20-something” mom even though she’s 37. Fresh-faced and with a sparkle in her eye, this former drug addict remembers the easy road downhill – and the tough uphill climb to who she is today.

“I grew up in an addicted family,” the petite brunette remembers of what she thought was normal at the time. “Both my parents were hooked on marijuana and my mom occasionally used meth, although she hid it from my dad.”

By the time Alisha was 11, she was stealing marijuana and smoking with her sister’s older friends. Meth became her drug of choice at thirteen.

“My best friend’s mom was a drug dealer,” Alisha says about the girl whose mother supplied meth in exchange for endless babysitting. “So easy. She got us right where she wanted us,” referring to the long hours she spent caring for the woman’s four little children.

Still, the teenager couldn’t get enough of the drug. Before long, she began stealing money from her parents. Not only did the pilfering go unnoticed, she was also able to hide her meth addiction and frequent absence from high school classes.

By the time she was 16, Alisha’s parents discovered her habit and she was on the road to the first of many rehabilitation programs.

“I could have taught the classes,” says Alisha about her six times in rehab over the years. “I did it for my parents, my husband, my probation officer, but not for myself.”

In spite of this kind of help, her life continued in a downward spiral that led to three children, a failed marriage – including loss of child visitation rights – and a lot more jail time.

Life wasn’t pretty – nor was Alisha. An arrest photo in 2001 captures the dead stare of a gaunt, hopeless young woman.

But when she moved from Albany, Ore. to Tri-Cities, Wash., with her then-divorced mom, Alisha thought she could start over. Still, the past – and her habit – dogged her steps, resulting in more jail time. Eventually, though, drug counseling began to have some effect.

“I thought I was doing pretty well because I was holding down a job and only used meth on my days off,” Alisha recalls about her skewed perspective.

Without much effort she had connected with new drug-using friends. However, one night as she mingled with her regular crowd she spontaneously jumped into a car with some guys she didn’t know. Before the joyride in the stolen vehicle was over, Alisha found herself in the middle of a standoff with police, a sawed-off shotgun within arms reach.

Fortunately, one policeman recognized the trembling and weeping young woman, a victim of her spontaneous decision. Knowing Alisha had been out of trouble for quite some time, he decided to give her a break.

“He looked me in the eye and he said, ‘Let this be a wake-up call,’” Alisha remembers the straight-talking moment on the almost deadly night.

Alone in her apartment the next morning, the broken woman kneeled beside her bed and cried out to God, pleading for a second chance. A feeling of love, forgiveness and comfort was immediate.

“It was a presence that I felt, an assurance I didn’t have to go it alone,” Alisha recalls.

Filled with newfound courage and purpose, Alisha called her drug and alcohol counselors knowing the consequences of admitting her drug use. She was arrested shortly thereafter, and the uphill journey began with six months in the Benton County jail.

It was there that a visiting pastor encouraged Alisha to join the inmates Bible study group. That first meeting was the start of a closer walk with her Savior-God and the road to recovery.

Eight years later, this married, drug-free and inspiring young woman reads the scriptures daily as she cuddles her surprise “miracle child” – a little boy conceived in spite of doctors’ diagnoses of the unlikelihood.

“My favorite verse is Jeremiah 29:11,” the attractive mom says with a smile as she quotes the familiar words from the Old Testament, “’For I know the plans I have for you…to give you a future and a hope.’”

Alisha Bryans is proof that God sees the hopeless – and knows they are not.

Lucy Note: After her life-changing cry for help in 2006, Alisha Bryans now lives drug-free. She serves on the Elijah Family Homes board in addition to volunteering with Word of Faith church Bible studies at the Benton County jail.

 

 

Beijing: The cases of several Australians potentially facing the death penalty in China for drug trafficking are centered around the southern province of Guangdong, a notorious hub for methamphetamine production and home to an anti-drug sweep that has netted hundreds, including dozens of foreign nationals.

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The spate of arrests of Australians – as many as eight in recent months – prompted the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to issue a travel advisory on Thursday warning travellers of the severe drug laws in China, while also noting the “substantial risks involved in carrying parcels for others which may conceal narcotics”.

While DFAT says it does not intend to reveal specific details of the Australians arrested, Fairfax Media has learnt of strong concerns that at least some of the Australians involved could have fallen foul of business-related scams which in turn have led to the suspects – unwittingly or otherwise – becoming drug couriers.

“We have some concerns that there may be a pattern in the cases of some of the individuals being arrested,” a DFAT spokesman said on Friday.

It is understood the issue had been raised in the most recent bilateral meeting between Foreign Affairs Minister Julie Bishop and her Chinese counterpart Wang Yi in Sydney last week.

One source said while there have been previous unreported instances of Australians being arrested in China for drug offences, the current spate was “unheard of” and “highly unusual”.

The barrage of arrests has stretched the workload of the consulate in Guangzhou, the provincial capital, with diplomats not usually involved in consular assistance also being pulled across to help with consular meetings and dealing with families.

Guangdong authorities launched a spectacular drug raid in December as part of the broader anti-drug sweep codenamed “Operation Thunder”. More than 3000 paramilitary and police swooped in helicopters and speedboats in 109 separate raids which culminated in the confiscation of more than 3 tons of methamphetamine, also known as ‘ice’, and 23 tons of raw materials. Almost a hundred foreigners, mostly of African background, were arrested in one raid alone, according to state media.

In a separate, high-profile arrest, 71-year-old Japanese senator Takuma Sakuragi – who also runs a private business in China – was detained and charged with drug trafficking in October after being caught with 3.3 kilograms of methamphetamine.

Mr. Sakuragi, who pleaded not guilty to the charges in court last month, said he was convinced to travel from Nagoya, Japan to sign “certain documents” in Guangzhou to recoup $US701,000 that he had lost from investments. He said he had no knowledge of the drugs hidden in the retractable handles and soles of shoes in his suitcase, which was given to him by his business associates from Nigeria and Mali.

China’s harsh drug laws state that people found guilty of possessing more than 50 grams of meth or heroin could face the death penalty. In 2010, four Japanese nationals were executed by China on drug-trafficking charges. Two Koreans were executed on drug distribution charges last month.

Chinese foreign ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying on Thursday acknowledged there were a “number” of Australians detained in China on drug charges, and that the cases were being dealt with “in accordance with the law”. She said drug crimes were universally recognized as a serious threat to society, while adding that China’s drug laws did not distinguish between nationalities.

 

 

 

 

http://www.smh.com.au/world/australians-face-death-penalty-for-drug-trafficking-in-china-20140912-10g8ci.html

 

MARSHALL COUNTY, Alabama – A 25-year-old Grant woman was charged with endangering her newborn after the baby tested positive for methamphetamine shortly after its birth, according to Marshall County Sheriff Scott Walls.

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Kimberly Karen Peters, 1272 Old Union Road was charged Thursday with chemical endangerment of a child and is being held in Marshall County Jail. Bond has not been set.

Walls said the infant is in stable condition. “We are being assisted in this investigation by Alabama Department of Human Resources,” he said.

 

 

 

 

http://www.al.com/news/huntsville/index.ssf/2014/09/grant_woman_charged_with_endan.html

 

Five men were arrested with 194,000 methamphetamine pills and 5kg of ice, or crystal methamphetamine, in a major drug bust in Nakhon Nayok province on Saturday.

The arrests and drug seizure were announced in a press conference chaired by deputy police chief Pongsapat Pongcharoen at the Narcotics Suppression Bureau on Sunday.

Pol Gen Pongsapat identified the five as Wallop Yooyen, 37, Sira Benhajisalem, 31, Suriya Pradapyat, 29, Witthaya Jitsuk, 29, and Kowi Maliwan, 29.

He said the five were nabbed in a sting operation in the car park of Princess Sirindhorn Medical Centre on Rangsit-Nakhon Nayok road in Ongkharak district of Nakhon Nayok province after they showed up with the drugs to pick up money from a policeman acting as a decoy.

A police team arrested the five while they were handing over 194,000 methamphetamine pills and 5kg ice of crystal methamphetamine and seized from them four cars, two guns and many other articles.

The five were charged with having illicit drugs in possession with intent to sell.

Police are still looking for another member of the gang identified as Suchart.

 

 

 

http://www.bangkokpost.com/most-recent/432206/five-arrested-in-huge-drug-haul

 

When does Methamphetamine kick in?

Posted: September 14, 2014 in Uncategorized

There are a number of factors which affect the onset of meth and its effects on the body. One important factor which influences drug onset is mode of administration. Methamphetamine hydrochloride can be inhaled (smoked), snorted, injected, or ingested, with injection and inhalation producing the most rapid onset and ingestion resulting in delayed onset.

In general, once methamphetamine is absorbed, the biological effects are the same regardless of the route of exposure. Peak blood methamphetamine concentrations occur shortly after injection, a few minutes after smoking, and around 3 hours after oral dosing. More here on how d-methamphetamine works, with a section for your questions about why people use meth or problems with meth at the end.

Meth active ingredients

The main ingredient in meth is methamphetamine hydrochloride. This chemical is present as wither a yellow or white crystalline powder or as “ice,” a large, usually clear crystal of high purity. What are the components of these forms of meth?

Free base (“methamphetamine base”), is the initial product of meth and is a liquid at room temperature. The hydrochloride salt is produced from the free base by bubbling hydrogen chloride gas through it. However, methamphetamine also contains one optically active carbon atom. Consequently, there are two isomeric forms of methamphetamine, called d-methamphetamine and l-methamphetamine. The d-isomer is more potent than the l- isomer; most all of the methamphetamine produced by illegal labs is the d-isomer. d-methamphetamine is a controlled substance in the United States and is only available by prescription for legitimate medical uses in the treatment of ADHD or short term treatment of obesity.

Factors that influence meth onset

For a drug to work, it must enter the body, dissolve into a solution, be absorbed by the body and the distributed to sites of action. And in the process, a number of different factors can affect the rate at which drug onset begins. These include:

  • Drug bioavailability – Intranasal and smoked methamphetamine are well absorbed. Although intranasal or smoked routes may decrease the risk of transmission of blood-borne diseases, exposure to methamphetamine and the possibility of drug-related complications remain substantial.
  • Drug form – Meth comes in several forms, including powder, crystal, rocks, and tablets. When it comes in the crystal form it is called “crystal meth.” The type of meth you take will influence onset of effects.
  • Mode of administration – How meth is abused affects onset of effects. Routes of methamphetamine administration are varied, with prior reports of exposure via nasal insufflation, IV administration, ingestion of liquid formulations, and a single case report of intravaginal exposure. Each of these effect onset of effect. Also, the producers of meth change the way that drugs dissolve in order to modify solubility characteristics, and therefore slow or quicken drug onset. Here is a general list of fastest to slowest drug delivery forms:

 

Fastest

  • Liquids, elixirs, syrups
  • Suspension solutions
  • Powders
  • Capsules
  • Tablets
  • Coated tablets
  • Enteric-coated tablets

Slowest

 

When does meth start working?   

Methamphetamine is readily absorbed from the GI tract and absorption is usually complete by 4-6 hours. How long can meth last? Effects persist for 6 to 12 hours and may persist up to 24 hours after large doses. Peak plasma levels of meth occur within 1 to 3 hours, varying with the degree of physical activity and the amount of food in the stomach.

 

When does meth peak?

Peak blood methamphetamine concentrations occur shortly after injection, a few hours after smoking, and even longer after oral dosing. Following oral administration, peak methamphetamine concentrations are seen in 2.6-3.6 hours and the mean elimination half-life is 10.1 hours (range 6.4-15 hours). Following intravenous injection, the mean elimination half-life is slightly longer (12.2 hours).

 

When does meth wear off?

The effects of methamphetamine on humans are profound. The stimulant effects from methamphetamine can last for hours. Often the methamphetamine user remains awake for days. As the high begins to wear off, the methamphetamine user enters a stage called “tweaking,” in which he or she is prone to violence, delusions, and paranoia.

 

Risks of meth addiction

Meth use can quickly lead to addiction. For one thing, its long half life and duration of effects are attractive for their euphoric effect. However, you can quickly become physically dependent on meth and it causes tolerance. People who abuse meth start needing to take more of it to get the same initial high. People who usually eat or snort meth might start to smoke or inject it to get a stronger, quicker high. Additionally, the psychological need for meth can compel continued use, especially when underlying psych-emotional issues go unresolved.

 

People trying to quit taking meth can experience any of these common effects:

  • Be unable to feel happy
  • Feel a very strong need to take meth
  • Feel angry or nervous
  • Get really tired but have trouble sleeping

 

Reference Sources: OEHHA: Methamphetamine

TOXNET: d-methamphtamine

PublicSafety: Methamphetamine – How It’s Made

NIDA: DrugFacts – Methamphetamine

NIDA for teens: Methamphetamine (Meth)

NHTSA: Methamphetamine (and Amphetamine)

NCJRS: Methamphetamine: A Dangerous Drug, A Spreading Threat

Justice: Meth Awareness

NCJRS: The National Methamphetamine Drug Conference

NCBI: Bottoms Up: Methamphetamine Toxicity from an Unusual Route

 

 

 

 

http://drug.addictionblog.org/when-does-meth-kick-in/

 

MIDDLETOWN, Calif. – An ongoing investigation involving federal and local law enforcement officials led this week to the arrest of a Santa Rosa man and the seizure of three pounds of methamphetamine.090914lcsomethbust

Hugoberto Quintanilla, 34, was arrested following a Tuesday morning search warrant service in Middletown, according to Lt. Steve Brooks of the Lake County Sheriff’s Office.

Brooks said the Lake County Sheriff’s Office assisted the Drug Enforcement Administration with the service of federal search warrants and arrest warrants in Middletown, Santa Rosa and Petaluma.

He said the service of the federal search warrants and arrest warrants was the culmination of a six-month joint investigation related to the importation and trafficking of methamphetamine into Lake County.

At 10:30 a.m. Tuesday DEA agents and members of the Sheriff’s Narcotics Task Force responded to an address in the 15000 block of Main Street in Middletown to serve a search warrant, Brooks said.

During the search three pounds of methamphetamine was located and seized, according to Brooks.

At that time, Quintanilla was arrested for possession and distribution of methamphetamine. Brooks said Quintanilla later was transported to a federal holding facility in San Francisco.

One additional suspect was arrested during the service of search warrants in Santa Rosa and Petaluma, Brooks said.

The Sheriff’s Narcotics Task Force can be reached through its anonymous tip line at 707-263-3663.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.lakeconews.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=38370:authorities-arrest-santa-rosa-man-seize-three-pounds-of-meth&catid=1:latest&Itemid=197

 

(Walhalla, SC) The Oconee County Sheriff’s Office arrested a Seneca woman yesterday on charges of manufacturing methamphetamine.

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41 year old Lisa Renee Reynolds of 14 Padgett Street was booked into the Oconee County Detention Center around 7:46pm.

Deputies responded to the Padgett Street address on the Utica Mill Hill Thursday afternoon due to accusations from Reynolds that her husband had stolen prescription medication from her. Reynolds also accused her husband of having a bottle with meth making substances in it which she said she dumped the contents of out in the yard of the residence.

According to deputies, the husband was not home at the time of the call.

After being questioned concerning the meth lab, Reynolds took deputies to an outbuilding where deputies observed several items used in the manufacturing of meth. Narcotics agents were notified and arrived on the scene and a consent to search form was signed by Reynolds for deputies to search the property and residence.

Deputies then discovered a shake and bake meth lab inside a suitcase in the residence, along with several items that are used in the manufacturing of meth in the residence and the outbuilding. Reynolds told deputies that she had not poured out the contents of the meth lab but put the shake and bake lab in the suitcase.

Deputies arrested Reynolds on charges of manufacturing meth and placed her on a Temporary Custody Order until warrants could be obtained, which they were this afternoon.

A minor child was found sleeping inside the residence and was turned over to the Department of Juvenile Justice on an outstanding pickup order.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.independentmail.com/news/seneca-woman-accused-of-making-meth_01328928

WALKER, LA (WAFB) – A husband and wife are behind bars after items used for making methamphetamine were found in their vehicle.4727468_G

“Not only is the manufacturing of methamphetamine extremely dangerous, but so is the handling, transporting and storage of the lab components,” said Capt. John Sharp, Walker Police Department. “As a consequence, experts in the removal, handling and cleanup of the materials used in the manufacturing of methamphetamine are critical, in order to reduce the risk to the public and officers.”

The items were discovered at roughly 4:30 p.m. on Vera McGowan road in Walker on Thursday, Sept. 11. Officers were initially contacted by a concerned citizen who reported a suspicious vehicle in the area.

“Contact with the vehicle occupants was made and they were told that the presence of the vehicle had been reported to be suspicious,” Capt. Sharp explained. “A routine field interview with the occupants was then conducted.”

Officials say the officer was interviewing the individuals when he saw a pipe in the car.

“Seeing the drug paraphernalia, the officer sought and obtained the couple’s consent to search the vehicle,” Capt. Sharp noted. “While searching inside of the vehicle, several component parts of what is commonly known as a ‘one pot meth lab’ were found. A search of the trunk-area of the vehicle yielded the remaining components of the ‘one pot’ device.”

Brandon Ducharme, 34, and Selena Ducharme, 35, were both arrested. During a search, the officer also located a small amount of marijuana.

Both were booked into the Livingston Parish Correctional Center. They are each charged with creation and operation of a clandestine laboratory (methamphetamine), simple possession of marijuana and possession of drug paraphernalia. Brandon Ducharme had outstanding warrants for no simple and aggravated cruelty to animals.

Selena Ducharme is being held in lieu of a $101,000 bond. Brandon Ducharme is being held in lieu of a $111,000 bond.

 

 

 

http://www.wafb.com/story/26519194/husband-wife-arrested-for-transporting-meth-lab-items-in-vehicle

 

IDAHO FALLS, IdahoAs the Idaho Meth Project holds its “Givin’ Meth the Boot” event, an Idaho woman is speaking out about her addiction to meth.

Cyn Reneau said she was addicted to meth for 100 days.

Although it cost her a six-figure job and her family, Reneau said she was powerless to resist when offered her first hit of meth eight years ago.

“At that point in my life, I had never been drunk, I had never tried any illegal drugs,” said Reneau.

“I made an impulsive decision, and I obviously made the wrong one.”

For the next 100 days, Reneau said she was devoted to getting her next fix.

“Even something as simple as brushing your teeth and taking a shower isn’t important. All that matters is that next high,” said Reneau.

Reneau said meth made her so paranoid she became obsessed with changing the locks to her home.hqdefault

“It didn’t matter if it was 2 o’clock in the morning or 2 o’clock in the evening, I’d be out there with a screwdriver changing doorknobs,” said Reneau.

Reneau’s family — even her young daughter — came second to drugs.

“I actually was two hours late picking her up from the hospital because I needed to score my dope,” said Reneau.

Toward the end of her meth experience, Reneau said she was consuming about $1,000 worth of meth each day — two ounces.

She didn’t give it up until police raided her home in front of her two daughters. She says she still recalls what she said to the officer who arrested her.

“I looked him square in the eyes and said, ‘I’m looking forward to a good night’s sleep. I’m finally safe,'” said Reneau.

 

 

 

 

http://www.localnews8.com/news/woman-recounts-100-days-of-meth-addiction/28039152

 

TERREBONNE PARISH, La. —Authorities in Terrebonne Parish seized pounds of methamphetamine, counterfeit cash and a digital scale in a drug bust early Friday morning.

The Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office announced the arrest of 48-year-old Christopher Reding in connection with the investigation.

meth-bust-091214-PNG

Authorities said a search warrant was executed at a home in the 5200 block of West Main Street about 5:30 a.m.

The Terrebonne Parish Sheriff’s Office, Houma Police Department, Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office and the Louisiana State Police worked in conjunction with the investigation surrounding the distribution of methamphetamine.

During the search, investigators seized over 7 pounds of meth — 6.7 lbs. was acquired in one large container, with an additional .8 grams acquired in a second location.

Authorities also seized $1,860 in cash, along with $140 in counterfeit currency.

A digital scale was also acquired during the search, which authorities said had been used by the suspect for weighing the methamphetamine.

Christopher-Reding-mug-jpg

The street value of the drugs was estimated at approx. $750,000.

Reding was arrested on two counts of distribution of a CDS, possession with intent to distribute, illegal proceeds derived from drug transactions, possession of drug paraphernalia, monetary instrument abuse and failure to possess of drug tax stamp.

Authorities said they seized Reding’s Chevy Silverado, Harley Davidson motorcycle and a custom-made motorcycle from the residence.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.wdsu.com/news/local-news/new-orleans/pounds-of-meth-counterfeit-cash-seized-in-terrebonne-parish-bust/28037082

 

THIBODAUX, LA (WVUE) – Cold medicine, ice packs, empty Gatorade bottles – it’s all part of an unsettling new trend in methamphetamine labs.

“It’s very portable,” said Sgt. Adam Dufrene with the Lafourche Parish Drug Task Force. “Most of the ingredients you can get in a store, you can put it in my backpack, an ice chest, the actual manufacturing you can do in a car.”

26512931_BG2

Dufrene says it’s called a “one pot” lab. This new way of making meth has been popping up in the bayou area. It’s easy to make, easy to move, and sometimes hard to spot.

Back in July, a former Golden Meadow officer and two others were arrested for making meth in a quiet neighborhood in Cut Off.

“Terrible,” said neighbor Chad Cheramie, who lives nearby. “I would’ve never thought of it. We couldn’t believe it.”

But these small labs still pose a big danger – they’re highly explosive.

“It’s probably more dangerous because you have a lot of people doing it,” said Dufrene. “Not a lot of education. And because of being on the increase and being popular – a younger crowd is getting their hands on it.”

Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office started cracking down on meth labs several years ago. The number of busts are as follows:

- In 2011, 12 busts were recorded.

- In 2012, that number dropped to six.

- The department reported five busts last year, 2013.

- But this year, 2014, that number doubled. Ten meth lab busts have already been reported.

“Some part of the manufacturing process is being glamorized in certain shows and they’re downplaying the dangers,” said Dufrene, citing the popularity of shows like “Breaking Bad.”

And to fight this growing problem, the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office says they continue to reach out to schools and communities.

“The more we get it out there the more we find we can combat the problem with greater ease,” said Dufrene.

The task force has been offering training to local EMS, fire departments and surrounding parish law enforcement. They say it’s played a big part in finding and shutting down these labs.

 

 

 

 

http://www.fox8live.com/story/26512931/mobile-meth-lab-trend-grows-in-lafourche-parish

 

SHEFFIELD — Information found at a methamphetamine lab dump site led to the discovery of an active lab at a Sheffield residence and the arrests of two woman, officials said.

Samantha Jane Pinto, 45, 1215 Southwest 13th Ave., Sheffield, and Tiffany Michelle Fennell, 28, same address, are charged with trafficking methamphetamine and first-degree manufacturing a controlled substance, according to Curtis Burns, director of the Colbert County Drug Task Force.

Drug agents said warrants for the same charges have been issued for Matthew Bradley King, 33, who also lives at the residence, and his father, Charles Huston King Jr., 53, same address.

Authorities said the dump site was found Wednesday afternoon on Cherokee Pike in Sheffield.

Working with the Sheffield Police Department, Burns said during a search of the site, items were located that led to the residence on 13th Avenue.

Burns said agents and police went to the residence and received permission to search the house and the area.

“We found an active lab and a used lab inside the residence and three more used labs in a burn pile outside the house,” Task Force Agent Troy Seal said.

He said during the search of the house, officers found 412 grams of liquid methamphetamine with a street value of more than $4,000.

Seal said a variety of items used in the manufacturing process as well as plastic bags and syringes were inside the house.

Seal said Colbert County Department of Human Resources has taken custody of Pinto’s 9-year-old daughter.

Pinto and Fennell are being held in the Colbert County Jail on bail of $50,000 each.

Anyone knowing the whereabouts of Matthew King or Charles King Jr., are asked to contact any local law enforcement agency or Shoals Crime Stoppers at 256-386-8685.

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.timesdaily.com/news/article_6977bc2c-3afc-11e4-9fec-001a4bcf6878.html

 

A 60-year-old ‘Walter White wannabe’ and a 77-year-old pensioner are among 10 men charged with cooking up a plot to make crystal meth, methamphetamine and ecstasy to flood the drug market in Bristol.

Bristol Crown Court heard claims that David Nash, 60, intended posing as a specialist in biofuels to enable him to research and purchase the chemicals required. Stephen Mooney for the prosecution said: “The defendants agreed to set up a number of laboratories in which a variety of different drugs would be produced. Those drugs were ecstasy, crystal meth and amphetamine.”

Crystal meth is an attractive proposition for would-be drugs manufacturers because there is no need to smuggle organic ingredients, said Mooney.

Crystal meth is a relatively new drug in the UK but has been widespread in the USA for many years,” the prosecuted detailed. “Crystal meth, clearly, was attractive to these defendants, but you need access to the raw materials. You could be the greatest baker in the world, but if you have no ingredients you have nothing.”

Police were covertly following those said to be involved, recording conversations including one between Nash and 77-year-old George Rogers on a trip to Slough to meet others involved in the alleged plan, before driving to the West Midlands where the lab was to be set up, the Bristol Post reports.

“Nash told Rogers he had a great deal of confidence in his cookery,” Mooney told the jury. “It is not unknown for laboratories [making drugs] to explode, which was one of the reasons police stopped it when they did. For those who watch television, there is a programme called Breaking Bad. The principal participant is involved in cooking crystal meth. It has dropped into popular culture as well.”

All 10 men – aged between 26 to 77, and from across the south of England – deny the charges against them. The trial continues.breaking-bad-lecturer-ryszard-jakubczyk

In the cult US TV show Breaking Bad, middle-aged chemistry teacher Walter White begins cooking crystal meth after learning he has terminal cancer.

Earlier this year chemistry lecturer Ryszard Jakubczyk was jailed for nine years after trying to build a crystal meth laboratory in the garden of a house in Grantham, Lincolnshire.

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://www.ibtimes.co.uk/breaking-bad-bristol-style-middle-aged-walter-white-denies-cooking-crystal-meth-plot-1465332

 

Three Mason City residents will go to jail for their involvement in a meth distribution ring. Forty-two-year-old George Lynn Perry, 42-year-old Angelita Gutierrez pled guilty to conspiracy to distribute meth and 47-year-old Dave Charles Schaer was found guilty by a jury.

The evidence showed all three were supplied with large quantities of meth, which they then sold. Perry and Gutierrez were each given a five-year sentenced. Schaer had a previous conviction on a felony drug charge, and was sentenced to 156 months in prison.

http://www.radioiowa.com/2014/09/12/three-mason-city-residents-sentenced-in-meth-conspiracy/