Eastern Caribbean hosts “abundant” transshipment points for illicit narcotics – US report

By SNO Staff

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The US State Department has released its International Narcotics Control Strategy Report (INCSR) for 2015.

The drugs and chemical control section of the INCSR covers the efforts of nearly 90 countries, including Saint Lucia.

It reported extensively on the Eastern Caribbean (EC), stating that drug-related violent crime remains high, fueling public anxiety about citizen security. It also alleges that Caribbean leaders continue to turn a blind eye to corruption.

The report said the EC hosts “abundant” transshipment points for illicit narcotics primarily from Venezuela destined for North American, European, and domestic Caribbean markets.

It states that local and international law enforcement believe traffickers are increasingly using yachts for drug transit, though “go-fast” boats, fishing trawlers, and cargo ships continue to play major transit roles.

“Increasingly effective interdiction efforts due to U.S.-donated patrol boats have pushed traffickers to change tactics with cocaine-laden mother ships remaining out of patrol boat range more than 50 miles off-shore while transferring smaller parcels of drugs to “go-fast” boats,” it added.

Further, the report said that drug-related violent crime remains elevated, fueling public anxiety about citizen security.

However, homicides throughout the region decreased in 2014 from the previous year. Many homicides resulted from turf wars between organized groups fighting to control drug distribution.

The US report also stated that cannabis cultivation remains widespread within in the EC. It said marijuana and cocaine are the most widely-used drugs in the region.

It also pointed out that six consecutive years of declining or stagnant macroeconomic growth has hollowed out EC law enforcement capacity, even when compared with the bleak situation described in past reports.

“Some EC governments have made improvements to previously antiquated criminal codes, collectively passing 41 criminal justice-related laws over the previous three years,” the report added.

In 2014, drug seizures in the Eastern Caribbean totaled 1.69 metric tons (MT) of cocaine and 376.75 MT of marijuana, according to U.S. government statistics.

There were 277 drug-related arrests during the year, 234 drug-related prosecutions, and 218 convictions, according to U.S. government statistics.

The United States supports a wide range of efforts designed to address crime and violence affecting EC citizens, primarily through Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI).

CBSI is a security partnership between the United States and Caribbean nations that seeks to substantially reduce illicit trafficking, advance public safety and citizen security, and promote justice.

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4 comments

  1. Like the US is our friend.

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  2. What do you get when Venezuela is your friend.Big mistake for the current government for joining ALBA.

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  3. This may not be a popular view but the war on drugs is a failed war and as in every war you have to look at who are the puppeteers behind it, looking to profit. If you follow the origins of most drugs they were created by governments.

    Are drugs bad? Yes for the most part. However our approach on dealing with drugs has been flawed. We live in a society where the underbelly of our economy is fueled by drugs.

    You could take a look at a few documentaries for a broader view:

    1. Code of the West
    2. The House I Live In
    3. How to Make Money Selling Drugs (my Favorite)
    4. Dallas Buyers Club (Not a documentary but thought provoking, based on true events)

    Real

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    • Poeple need to understand that drugs are NOT the problem, but the laws preventing people from using drugs are. Drugs are illegal, which means if i have a drug related problem, i will not seek the help of the police in settling it, i will either let it go, or commit another crime to solve my problem.

      Now on what you said "Are drugs bad? Yes for the most part". you sir are wrong. drugs are as safe as you want them to be. if you look up Dr Carl Hart's research study on drugs, he found that 70-80% of ALL drug users ( I.E people who use cocaine, crack, heroine, meth, marijuana, PCP, opium etc.) are MODERATE users, meaning they use these drugs regularly and are still stable FUNCTIONING members of society. so its fairly clear to say that the only time drgs are dangerous is when they are abused, as with any other substance. i really recommend you read his research, it will change how you look at drugs.

      And let be honest here. Drugs should not be illegal, just think of how many eople use drugs, think of how much drugs they buy and its not even readily available....now think of how much money the government could make if they sold, taxed and regulated drugs. marijuana alone would bring in an estimate of $300M in revenue. The only bad thing about drugs is that they are illegal.

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