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1 US MA: PUB LTE: Fast Forward - And The Endless War ContinuesMon, 28 Feb 2000
Source:Boston Globe (MA) Author:Goldstein, Nancy Area:Massachusetts Lines:32 Added:02/28/2000

Fast forward to the year 2005 and you will find the United States is deeply and tragically embroiled in an unwinnable war in Colombia that cannot stop the demand in the United States for illegal drugs.

Drug trafficking in this country continues to escalate. Prison overcrowding is out of control, and the majority of prisoners are drug law offenders. Money better spent on social and educational issues is squandered abroad, and many young people continue to graduate from high school lacking basic skills and capabilities they need to lead productive lives - if their lives are not cut short fighting a war in their own neighborhoods.

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2 US CA: Pot Farms Invade National ParksSun, 27 Feb 2000
Source:Daily Herald (IL)          Area:California Lines:182 Added:02/28/2000

SAN BERNARDINO NATIONAL FOREST, Calif. - They were spotted from the air, as conspicuous as sharks in a school of guppies: Three plots of land, seemingly stripped of the towering oaks and manzanitas that shroud this patch of Southern California forest. These were not natural formations. They were entirely man-made - and entirely illegal.

A week after the August sighting, a helicopter returned with two dozen Forest Service agents and sheriff's detectives. They cleared a landing pad and cut a trail into the site, coming first to a makeshift reservoir. Six hoses, filtering water from a creek, ran in one end; several more snaked back out the other.

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3 France: OPED: Entering Colombia's Civil War Won't Solve TheMon, 21 Feb 2000
Source:International Herald-Tribune Author:Pfaff, William Area:France Lines:111 Added:02/28/2000

PARIS - The Clinton administration has put before Congress an "emergency" $1.6 billion program to expand military assistance to the Colombian army and security forces fighting both an insurrection and the drug trade.

Administration officials say this program will be part of what will "probably be a huge effort, lasting for years," whose objective is "to strengthen Colombian institutions and help the government reach a peace" with the leftist guerrilla groups and right-wing paramilitary forces responsible for years of chaotic violence in Colombia.

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4 US CA: Bad LA Cop Offers ApologySat, 26 Feb 2000
Source:Evansville Courier & Press (IN)          Area:California Lines:54 Added:02/28/2000

With tears in his eyes, the disgraced policeman at the center of a massive corruption scandal apologized as he was sentenced Friday to five years in prison for stealing cocaine.

Rafael Perez, who has admitted framing innocent people, doctoring crime scenes and lying in court, offered a message to rookie cops: "Whoever chases monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster himself."

Perez was sentenced under a plea bargain that grants him immunity for other crimes he has admitted to investigators. He was also given credit for the time he has already spent in custody.

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5 US WA: Yakama Nation Plans To Open Tribal Drug CourtMon, 28 Feb 2000
Source:Register-Guard, The (OR)          Area:Washington Lines:32 Added:02/28/2000

TOPPENISH, Wash. - The Yakama Nation expects a first-of-its-kind tribal drug court to be up and running next year, and its chief judge says it's an idea whose time has come.

By breaking the cycle of drugs and crime, the courts reduce the number of jail inmates and repeat offenders and save money, said Rory Flint Knife, who became the Yakama Nation's chief judge last May.

A three-year federal Justice Department grant will pay initial costs, said Anna Ward, tribal court deputy director.

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6 US CA: PUB LTE: Drugging The ChildrenMon, 28 Feb 2000
Source:Orange County Register (CA) Author:Forest, Steve Gick-Lake Area:California Lines:25 Added:02/28/2000

I find it "troubling" that the number of preschoolers being drugged has increased sharply from 1991 to 1995 ["Toddler Rx rise causes concern," News, Feb. 23]. Could it be that our society's rush to push children into daycare has a bearing on this problem? Researchers should make a comparison between children who are raised at home by a parent, as opposed to those raised in daycare. Perhaps we would find that it is necessary to drug our children so that parents can each have fulfilling careers and nice things.

Steve Gisk, Lake Forest

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7 US TX: PUB LTE: Marijuana Is Not DeadlyMon, 28 Feb 2000
Source:Houston Chronicle (TX) Author:Wallace, Thomas Area:Texas Lines:24 Added:02/28/2000

The Feb. 15 Chronicle article, "Federal task force created to aid drug war," failed to mention that most of our drug war money is spent chasing marijuana -- a plant with no documented fatalities -- and that our government's only concern is to stop the crime and untaxed income created by the black market. If we simply allowed responsible adults to grow the plant on their own property, half the Drug Enforcement Agency could be reassigned to more important tasks and we could stop imprisoning our citizens for their trifling consumptive habits. Or should we continue fighting each other?

[end]

8US CO: Traveler Appeals Drug ConvictionMon, 28 Feb 2000
Source:Denver Post (CO) Author:Pankratz, Howard Area:Colorado Lines:Excerpt Added:02/28/2000

Alleged 'racial profiling' at issue

Feb. 28 - With police nationwide under fire for "racial profiling," the Colorado Supreme Court hears arguments today in a case involving a Hispanic airline passenger arrested on suspicion of ferrying cocaine from Los Angeles to Denver.

The man's lawyer says local and federal drug agents targeted his client because of his ethnicity. His conviction and two concurrent 24-year prison sentences should be thrown out, the attorney will tell the justices, who are hearing cases in a special traveling session at Air Academy High School near Colorado Springs.

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9 US: Inmate Death Spotlights Prison Drug TradeMon, 28 Feb 2000
Source:Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (PA) Author:Silver, Jonathan D. Area:United States Lines:147 Added:02/28/2000

Clever inmates who crave drugs are infinitely creative in how they obtain them.

They swallow balloons filled with narcotics before their arrests and, once behind bars, pass them while going to the bathroom. They have girlfriends transfer contraband packets mouth to mouth during kisses while at magistrates' offices. They shove anything from drugs to syringes to sets for picking locks into body cavities, hoping they won't be discovered.

No one is sure how convicted drug smuggler and federal informant John Regis "Re Re" King Jr. got his hands on the blood-filled hypodermic syringe found with his corpse Wednesday in an Allegheny County Jail cell.

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10 Mexico: Hail Of Bullets Kills Tijuana Police ChiefMon, 28 Feb 2000
Source:Austin American-Statesman (TX) Author:Ellingwood, Ken Area:Mexico Lines:92 Added:02/28/2000

TIJUANA, Baja California -- In the latest example of the murderous violence that has gripped this border town, the municipal police chief was assassinated Sunday morning by gunmen who sprayed his car with more than 100 bullets as he drove along a busy highway, authorities said.

Municipal Police Chief Alfredo de la Torre Marquez, 50, was driving alone to his office after attending Mass when three cars closed in on his black GMC Suburban and gunmen opened fire with at least one AK-47 assault rifle and a 9 mm handgun.

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