Press Releases

Senators Feinstein and Talent Urge Greater U.S./Mexico/Canada Cooperation in Combatting Meth Drug Trafficking

- Call on Bush, Fox, and Harper to work together to stamp out cross-border smuggling -

Washington, DC – In letters sent to President Bush, President Fox of Mexico, and Prime Minister Harper of Canada, U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) and Jim Talent (R-Mo.) today urged greater cooperation between the United States, Mexico, and Canada to stamp out and methamphetamine production and abuse throughout North America.

Senators Feinstein and Talent are calling on the leaders of these three countries to take greater efforts together to combat international traffickers in methamphetamine and its precursors in order to shut them down.

“This is a priority problem that requires our three nations to work together,” Senators Feinstein and Talent wrote to President Bush. “Precursor chemicals and the drug itself are moving in greater volumes both northward and southward.”

In their letter to President Vicente Fox of Mexico, the Senators wrote, “In 1998, Mexico enacted controls on methamphetamine precursors in the Mexican Federal Act for the Control of Chemical Precursors. Nonetheless, eight years later, the problem continues to grow. We respectfully request that you consider strong legislation barring the importation of these chemicals under all but the most exceptional circumstances.”

To Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, Senators Feinstein and Talent wrote, “As you know, the smuggling problem is growing between our two nations. With your leadership, we can take steps to limit, and maybe even eradicate, the methamphetamine epidemic.”

This week, the “Combat Methamphetamine Act” sponsored by Senators Talent and Feinstein was enacted as part of the PATRIOT Act Reauthorization. This Act will regulate the sale of pseudoephedrine, a key precursor chemical in the manufacture of methamphetamine.

Following are the texts of the letters Senators Feinstein and Talent sent to President Bush, President Fox, and Prime Minister Harper, respectively:

March 10, 2006

George W. Bush
President
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President,

This week, the United States enacted the “Combat Methamphetamine Act” as part of the PATRIOT Act Reauthorization. This Act will regulate the sale of pseudoephedrine, a key precursor chemical in the manufacture of methamphetamine. We believe that this will have a major impact on the methamphetamine trade in North America, and we welcome this important step in stemming the epidemic abuse of this dangerous drug.

On a recent visit to the border between San Diego and Tijuana, we learned of the increased methamphetamine traffic across our border with Mexico, with precursor chemicals and the drug itself moving in greater volumes both northward and southward. These smuggling efforts are becoming increasingly sophisticated. For instance, smugglers are able to move some chemicals in liquid form that is almost impossible to distinguish from water using the techniques available at border crossings.

As you know, the smuggling problem is not limited to our Southern border. We are also writing to Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, as well as to President Fox of Mexico, to emphasize our view that this is a priority problem that requires our three nations to work together.

The passage of the Combat Methamphetamine Act presents an opportunity to move forward with a concerted effort to stamp out meth production and abuse throughout North America. We respectfully request that you direct the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Homeland Security, in conjunction with the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy, to work with our neighboring governments to stop the flow of precursor chemicals, stop the flow of methamphetamine, and shut down the labs which make this terrible drug.

Thank you for your continued efforts in the fight against organized crime and international drug trafficking. We stand ready to assist you in any way we can.

Sincerely yours,

Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

James M. Talent
United States Senator

*******

March 10, 2006

 

President Vicente Fox
Residencia Oficial de los Pinos
Puerta 1
Col. San Miguel Chapultepec
Delegación Miguel Hidalgo
México, D.F., c.p. 11850

Dear President Fox,

This week, the United States enacted the “Combat Methamphetamine Act,” a bill which will regulate the sale of pseudoephedrine, a key precursor chemical in the manufacture of methamphetamine. We believe that this will have a major impact on the methamphetamine trade in North America , and we welcome this important step in stemming the epidemic abuse of this dangerous drug.

In a letter dated July 12, 2005, your Secretary of Foreign Affairs, Luis Ernesto Derbez Bautista, outlined for one of us (Senator Feinstein) many of the ongoing cooperative efforts between our governments to defeat international drug trafficking organizations. We appreciate this, but since July the situation has worsened. We have enclosed the earlier correspondence for your reference and background. We understand that in 1998, Mexico enacted controls on methamphetamine precursors in the Mexican Federal Act for the Control of Chemical Precursors. Nonetheless, eight years later, the problem continues to grow. We respectfully request that you consider strong legislation barring the importation of these chemicals under all but the most exceptional circumstances.

On a recent visit to the border between San Diego and Tijuana, we learned of the increased methamphetamine traffic across our mutual border, with precursor chemicals and the drug itself moving in greater volumes both north and south. These smuggling efforts are becoming increasingly sophisticated. For instance, smugglers are able to move some chemicals in liquid form that is almost impossible to distinguish from water using the techniques available at border crossings.

The bottom line is that we are taking steps forward, but they are not enough. It is critical that the United States and Mexico work together to stop the flow of precursor chemicals, stop the flow of manufactured methamphetamine, and shut down the labs which make this terrible drug.

We are also writing to President Bush, as well as Prime Minister Stephen Harper of Canada, to emphasize our view that this is a priority problem that requires our three nations to work together.

Thank you for your continued efforts in the fight against organized crime and international drug trafficking.

Sincerely yours,

Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

James M. Talent
United States Senator

******

March 10, 2006

The Rt. Hon. Stephen Harper
Prime Minister
80 Wellington Street
Ottawa
K1A 0A2

Dear Prime Minister Harper,

This week, the United States enacted the “Combat Methamphetamine Act,” a bill which will regulate the sale of pseudoephedrine, a key precursor chemical in the manufacture of methamphetamine. We believe that this will have a major impact on the methamphetamine trade in North America, and we welcome this important step in stemming the epidemic abuse of this dangerous drug.

We are aware of the close cooperation of Canadian and United States agencies in combating international traffickers in methamphetamine and its precursors, but we believe that greater efforts are necessary to shut them down. On a recent visit to the border between San Diego and Tijuana, we learned of the increased methamphetamine traffic across our border with Mexico, with precursor chemicals and the drug itself moving in greater volumes both northward and southward. These smuggling efforts are becoming increasingly sophisticated. For instance, smugglers are able to move some chemicals in liquid form that is almost impossible to distinguish from water using the techniques available at border crossings.

As you know, the smuggling problem is also growing between our two nations. It is critical that the United States and Canada work together to stop the flow of precursor chemicals, stop the flow of methamphetamine, and shut down the labs which make this terrible drug. To that end, I strongly urge you to personally examine this issue. I am confident that with your leadership, we can take steps to limit, and maybe even eliminate, the methamphetamine epidemic.

We are also writing to President Bush, as well as to President Fox of Mexico, to emphasize our view that this is a priority problem that requires our three nations to work together.

Thank you for your efforts in the fight against organized crime and international drug trafficking.

Sincerely yours,

Dianne Feinstein
United States Senator

James M. Talent
United States Senator

 

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