OTTAWA - The federal government's crackdown on drug-impaired driving
has taken a big step forward, as the Justice Department is set to give
its blessing to Canada's first roadside saliva test.
Once in use, police officers will be able to swab a driver's mouth to
test for the presence of THC, the main psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.
Roadside saliva-testing devices were authorized by Bill C-46, a
massive overhaul of Canadaas impaired driving laws that passed in
[continues 705 words]
The federal government should follow the growing movement in the states
and repeal the ban on marijuana for both medical and recreational use.
It took 13 years for the United States to come to its senses and end
Prohibition, 13 years in which people kept drinking, otherwise
law-abiding citizens became criminals and crime syndicates arose and
flourished. It has been more than 40 years since Congress passed the
current ban on marijuana, inflictingA great harm on society just to
prohibit a substance far less dangerous than alcohol.
[continues 460 words]
One of the nation's top public-health officials has explained why the
fight against the opioid epidemic is so personal to him.
At a conference in New Orleans, Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention Director Robert Redfield Jr. opened up about his family's
experience with opioids, saying that one of his adult children nearly
died of an overdose of cocaine mixed with fentanyl, a potent synthetic
opioid that is 30 to 50 times stronger than heroin, according to the
[continues 681 words]
YOKY RIDGE, Colombia-On a hilltop base shielded with sandbags, police
sharpshooter Jose Diaz gazed into thick jungle as a fellow commando
checked tripwires protecting the stronghold. A radioman listened in on
the fighters they were battling.
"They're always looking for the right moment to attack our base," said
Hector Ocampo, commander of the Colombian detachment in a
cocaine-trafficking corridor near Panama.
Their adversaries weren't the FARC rebels that security forces had
long fought, but a cocaine-trafficking gang known as the Gulf Clan. In
the year since the powerful Marxist guerrillas disarmed, drug gangs
like this one have battled each other and the state for control of the
booming cocaine trade in remote regions where the FARC once ruled.
[continues 872 words]
That old New Orleans con of, "I betcha I can tell you where you got
them shoes," just took on a whole different meaning.
According to the Drug Enforcement Administration's just released list
of "Drug Slang Code Words," for 2018, "shoes" is one of 353 terms the
cool kids are using for cannabis these days. (I bet you thought there
would be 420.) So, offering to tell the tourists where they obtained
their footwear could spark a panic.
[continues 364 words]
A convicted Colombian drug cartel leader who went undercover to inform
on Mexican kingpin "El Chapo" and other major traffickers has been
sentenced to 31 years in prison.
The Miami Herald reports that 48-year-old Henry De Jesus Lopez
Londono, who was arrested in Argentina and extradited to Miami in
2016, was sentenced on Monday for drug trafficking conspiracy.
U.S. District Judge Donald Graham previously rejected a plea deal that
included 17 years behind bars. Lopez Londono could have received a
Officials say Lopez Londono was involved in the smuggling of some
60,000 kilograms of cocaine between 2007 and 2012.
As legal marijuana spreads and the opioid epidemic rages on, the
number of drugged drivers killed in car crashes is rising
dramatically, according to a report released today.
Forty-four percent of fatally injured drivers tested for drugs had
positive results in 2016, the Governors Highway Safety Association
found, up more than 50 percent compared with a decade ago. More than
half the drivers tested positive for marijuana, opioids or a
combination of the two.
"These are big-deal drugs. They are used a lot," said Jim Hedlund, an
Ithaca, New York-based traffic safety consultant who conducted the
highway safety group's study. "People should not be driving while
they're impaired by anything and these two drugs can impair you."
[continues 987 words]
WASHINGTON - One airman said he felt paranoia. Another marveled at the
vibrant colors. A third admitted, "I absolutely just loved altering my
Meet service members entrusted with guarding nuclear missiles that are
among the most powerful in America's arsenal. Air Force records
obtained by The Associated Press show they bought, distributed and
used the hallucinogen LSD and other mind-altering illegal drugs as
part of a ring that operated undetected for months on a highly secure
military base in Wyoming. After investigators closed in, one airman
deserted to Mexico.
[continues 807 words]
After the death of her father, a prominent hotel owner in Seattle,
Ella Henderson started taking morphine to ease her grief. She was 33
years old, educated and intelligent, and she frequented the upper
reaches of Seattle society. But her "thirst for morphine" soon
"dragged her down to the verge of debauchery," according to a
newspaper article in 1877 titled "A Beautiful Opium Eater." After
years of addiction, she died of an overdose.
In researching opium addiction in late-19th-century America, I've come
across countless stories like Henderson's. What is striking is how,
aside from some Victorian-era moralizing, they feel so familiar to a
21st-century reader: Henderson developed an addiction at a vulnerable
point in her life, found doctors who enabled it and then
self-destructed. She was just one of thousands of Americans who lost
their lives to addiction between the 1870s and the 1920s.
[continues 901 words]
It's all about harm reduction and improving community health outcomes
No doubt some Hamiltonians are chuckling to hear city council is
considering banning sugary drinks from city buildings to protect
With good reason.
The proposed ban by the public health department lands at the same
time the city is moving ahead with opening its first safe injection
site for drug addicts.
It's more than a little ironic that the city may be cracking down on
sugar while enabling the use of illegal drugs like heroin and cocaine.
[continues 581 words]
Northwest Ohio Syringe Services has begun distributing fentanyl test
strips to active users of opioids and other drugs. The exchange, a
program through the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department, is part of
a larger strategy of harm reduction to keep people with addiction
issues healthy while using, and provide them with resources and help
when they want to seek treatment.
Fentanyl has become the scourge of anyone trying to fight Ohio's
opioid epidemic: deadly in small quantities and appearing in an
increasing number of fatal overdoses.
[continues 661 words]
WASHINGTON - FPI Management, a property company in California, wants
to hire dozens of people. Factories from New Hampshire to Michigan
need workers. Hotels in Las Vegas are desperate to fill jobs.
Those employers and many others are quietly taking what once would
have been a radical step: They're dropping marijuana from the drug
tests they require of prospective employees. Marijuana testing - a
fixture at large American employers for at least 30 years - excludes
too many potential workers, experts say, at a time when filling jobs
is more challenging than it's been in nearly two decades.
[continues 1367 words]
Doug Ford says he is "dead against" supervised injection sites and
believes the focus should be on drug rehabilitation instead.
And if elected premier of Ontario in June, the Progressive
Conservative Leader says he will do everything he can to fight the
opioid crisis and get people who are struggling with addiction the
help they need.
"If your son, daughter, loved one ever had an addiction, would you
want them to go in a little area and do more drugs? I am dead against
that," Mr. Ford said Friday. "We have to help these people. We can't
just keep feeding them and feeding them."
[continues 541 words]
The Liberal Party of Canada has voted in favour of removing criminal
penalties for the personal possession of drugs.
It's one of a number of policies that the party selected as
priorities at a convention in Halifax on Saturday (April 21).
Members also voted in favour of universal pharmacare, decriminalizing
consensual sex work, and expanding medicare to cover mental-health
A total of 15 policies were selected to become official party
However, a policy's status as a party priority does not mean that
party leaders have to include it in the document where it really
counts: the party's campaign platform for the next federal election.
[continues 495 words]
We have been here before -- a raging epidemic of addiction that
destroys lives, families and communities.
Who was on the front line in the 1990s, when the drug was crack and
the addicts were mostly black? Drug czar William Bennett. His weapons
were prosecution and prison.
Today, when the drugs are opioids and the addicts are mostly white?
U.S. Surgeon General Jerome Adams, a doctor, is out there, telling the
country, "We need to see addiction as a chronic disease and not a
[continues 822 words]
U.S. prosecutors say their evidence against notorious Mexican drug
lord Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman includes killings, torture,
kidnappings, prison breaks and even an attempt to smuggle seven tons
of cocaine in cans of jalapenos.
A government memo filed Tuesday also says there's evidence that Guzman
was involved in a 1992 drug-gang shootout at a Puerto Vallarta,
Mexico, nightclub that left six people dead.
Guzman's lawyer, Eduardo Balarezo, said he was reviewing the memo and
would "respond in due course."
[continues 154 words]
President Trump's proposal to invoke the death penalty for drug
traffickers is an idea that is, in the practical scheme of things,
unworkable. It is also probably unconstitutional and obviously
simplistic. It is a gimmick, not a policy.
We need a policy.
The president likes dramatic gestures for difficult problems - a ban
on all potential terrorists, a big wall next to Mexico, a 25-percent
tariff on steel. This is not an altogether bad instinct. We need
strong, decisive leaders and criminals need to fear punishment.
[continues 438 words]
WASHINGTON - President Trump's plan to use the death penalty on drug
dealers has all the hallmarks of his favorite policies: It could fit
on the front of a baseball cap. It is a proven applause line. It
appeals to a conservative base.
But, like so many of Trump's slogans-turned-policy, it's dredged from
a bygone era and lacks clear evidence showing it would be effective.
Using an obscure federal provision to bring capital cases against
dealers, the concept that Trump enthusiastically backed during a visit
to New Hampshire this week, fits within the framework of some of his
other cornerstone ideas: Build the wall, Launch trade wars, Arm
teachers. To some critics in the mainstream, though, the ideas are
impractical, imprecise, or just dangerous.
[continues 1074 words]
Guns, gangs unit member has pleaded not guilty
A suspended Hamilton police officer fed drug traffickers sensitive
information and favours in return for cash payments, a Crown attorney
said Monday during his opening address to a Toronto jury.
Craig Ruthowsky, a former member of the Hamilton Police Service's guns
and gangs unit, has pleaded not guilty to obstruction of justice,
bribery, breach of trust, trafficking and conspiracy to commit an
He became ensnared in a Toronto Police Service wiretap investigation
called Project Pharaoh aimed at gathering evidence of drug and firearm
trafficking in Toronto's west end, Crown attorney John Pollard said in
[continues 326 words]
The drugs have started eating away at our Punjabi youth.
This disease has spread throughout North America. The desire to earn
quick money without any hard work has pushed many Punjabi youth into
Last year a Punjabi husband and wife were caught by the RCMP with
cocaine worth $8.4 million. It was a large consignment of drugs being
taken from the United States to Calgary. The couple, identified as
Gurminder Singh Toor, 31, and Kirandeep Kaur Toor, 26, were arrested
in connection with the cocaine.
[continues 506 words]