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Heroin trafficking : hearing before the Subcommittee on Crime and Criminal Justice of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, One Hundred Third Congress, second session, September 29, 1994 online

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HEROIN TRAFFICKING



HEAEING

BEFORE THE

SUBCOMMITTEE ON
CRIME AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE

OF THE

COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIAKY
HOUSE OP REPRESENTATIVES

ONE HUNDRED THIRD CONGRESS

SECOND SESSION



SEPTEMBER 29, 1994



Serial No. 84




RECEIVED



APR 1 2003
IbOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY

iOyERNMENT DOCUMENTS DEPARTMENT



HAMPDEN LAW LIBRARY



Printed for the use of the Committee on the Judiciary



U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON : 1995



For sale by the U.S. Government Printing Office
Superintendent of Documents, Congressional Sales Office, Washington, DC 20402
ISBN 0-16-046713-6



HEROIN TRAFHCKING



HEARING

BEFORE THE

SUBCOMMITTEE ON
CRIME AND CRIMINAL JUSTICE

OF THE

COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

ONE HUNDRED THIRD CONGRESS

SECOND SESSION



SEPTEMBER 29, 1994



Serial No. 84



GOyT.



m ? 3 !^




HAMPDEN LAW LIBRARY



RECEIVE



n




BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY

lOyERNMENT DOCUMENTS DEPARTMENl



Printed for the use of the Committee on the Judiciary



85-909 cc



U.S. GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE
WASHINGTON : 1995



For sale by the U.S. Government Printing Office
Superintendent of Documents. Congressional Sales Office. Washington, DC 20402
ISBN 0-16-046713-6



COMMITTEE ON THE JUDICIARY
JACK BROOKS, Texas, Chairman



DON EDWARDS, California
JOHN CONYERS, JR., Michigan
ROMANO L. MAZZOLI, Kentucky
WILLIAM J. HUGHES, New Jersey
MIKE SYNAR, Oklahoma
PATRICIA SCHROEDER, Colorado
DAN GLICKMAN, Kansas
BARNEY FRANK, Massachusetts
CHARLES E. SCHUMER, New York
HOWARD L. BERMAN, California
RICK BOUCHER, Virginia
JOHN BRYANT, Texas
GEORGE E. SANGMEISTER, Illinois
CRAIG A. WASHINGTON, Texas
JACK REED, Rhode Island
JERROLD NADLER, New York
ROBERT C. SCOTT, Virginia
DAVID MANN, Ohio
MELVIN L. WATT, North Carolina
XAVIER BECERRA, California



HAMILTON FISH, JR., New York
CARLOS J. MOORHEAD, California
HENRY J. HYDE, Illinois
F. JAMES SENSENBRENNER, JR.,

Wisconsin
BILL McCOLLUM, Florida
GEORGE W. GEKAS, Pennsylvania
HOWARD COBLE, North Carolina
LAMAR S. SMITH, Texas
STEVEN SCHIFF, New Mexico
JIM RAMSTAD, Minnesota
ELTON GALLEGLY, California
CHARLES T. CANADY, Florida
BOB INGLIS, South Carolina
BOB GOODLATTE, Virginia



JONATITAN R. YarOWSKY, General Counsel

Robert A. LembO, Counsel /Administrator

ALAN F. Coffey, Jr., Minority Chief Counsel



Subcommittee on Crime and Criminal Justice

CHARLES E. SCHUMER, New York, Chairman

DON EDWARDS. California F. JAMES SENSENBRENNER. JR.,
JOHN CONYERS, JR., Michigan Wisconsin

ROMANO L. MAZZOLI, Kentucky LAMAR S. SMITH, Texas

DAN GLICKMAN, Kansas STEVEN SCHIFF. New Mexico

GEORGE E. SANGMEISTER, Illinois JIM RAMSTAD, Minnesota

CRAIG A. WASHINGTON, Texas GEORGE W. GEKAS, Pennsylvania
DAVID MANN, Ohio

David Yassky, Counsel

Tom Diaz, Assistant Counsel

Holly Wiseman, Assistant Counsel

Andrew Cowin, Minority Counsel



(II)



CONTENTS



HEARING DATE



Page
September 29, 1994 1

OPENING STATEMENT

Schumer, Hon. Charles E., a Representative in Congress from the State
of New York, and chairman, Subcommittee on Crime and Criminal
Justice 1

WITNESSES

Arcos, Cresencio S., Jr., Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International

Narcotics Matters, U.S. Department of Justice 56

Brown, Lee, Director, Office of National Drug Control Policy, Executive Office
of the President 2

Constantine, Thomas A., Administrator, Drug Enforcement Administration,
U.S. Department of Justice 30

Jones, Chester, certified addictions counselor, Marshal Heights Community

Development Association, Washington, DC 86

Raber, Inspector James, commanding officer. Drug Enforcement Task Force,
New York City Police Department, accompanied by Deputy Inspector James
W^ard, Narcotics Borough Manhattan South, New York City Police Depart-
ment 67

LETTERS, STATEMENTS, ETC., SUBMITTED FOR THE HEARING

Arcos, Cresencio S., Jr., Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for International

Narcotics Matters, U.S. Department of Justice: Prepared statement 59

Brown, Lee, Director, Office of National Drug Conlrol Policy, Executive Office

of the President: Prepared statement 9

Constantine, Thomas A., Administrator, Drug Enforcement Administration,

U.S. Department of Justice: Prepared statement 33

Jones, Chester, certified addictions counselor. Marshal Heights Community

Development Association, Washington, DC: Prepared statement 88

Raber, Inspector James, commanding officer. Drug Enforcement Task Force,

New YorK City Police Department: Prepared statement 70



(III)



HEROIN TRAFFICKING



THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 29, 1994

House of Representatives,
Subcommittee on Crime and Criminal Justice,

Committee on the Judiciary,

Washington, DC.
The subcommittee met, pursuant to notice, at 10:08 a.m., in room
2226, Raybum House Office Building, Hon. Charles E. Schumer
(chairman of the subcommittee) presiding.

Present: Representatives Charles E. Schumer, John Conyers, Jr.,
and F. James Sensenbrenner, Jr.

Also present: David Yassky, counsel; Tom Diaz, assistant coun-
sel; Rachel Jacobson, secretary; and Andrew Cowin, minority coun-
sel.

OPENING STATEMENT OF CHAIRMAN SCHUMER

Mr. Schumer. The Chair has received a request to cover this
hearing in whole or in part by television broadcast, radio broadcast,
still photography or other similar methods. In accordance with
committee rule 5 permission will be granted unless there is objec-
tion. Without objection.

Good morning. Welcome to this hearing on heroin trafficking.
This is the first in a series that will contmue into the next Con-
gress looking into the problem of drug abuse in America.

Today is an especially busy day for the Judiciary Committee, and
so I am going to keep my opening remarks brief, and I would ask
all the witnesses keep their oral summaries to 5 minutes. But
make no mistake about it, the brevity of my statement is not a
measure of how concerned I am about neroin.

Heroin is a vicious drug. It lures its users into a living hell that
often lasts a lifetime. In recent years, some who fancy themselves
to be artists have glamorized heroin and have portrayed it as a chic
drug for the sensitive, the smart, and the avant garde. Nothing
could be further from the truth.

The reality is that heroin is cheap. It is squalid. It is sordid.
Those misled by fantasies about heroin always awaken and always
awaken too late to these horrible truths.

Heroin wastes lives. It destroys the bodies and the minds of its
users. Heroin destroys families. Heroin destroys entire commu-
nities by spreading the deadly HIV virus that causes AIDS and in-
festing those communities with the violent crime that always comes
with drug trafficking. And we are here today because there are dis-
turbing signs that heroin is making a comeback after having been
greatly suppressed over the decades of the late 1970's and 1980's.

(1)



Let's be clear, we are not yet declaring this crisis an epidemic,
but heroin has become cheaper and more plentiful in recent years.
Most disturbing, it is appearing in a form so pure it can be inhaled
instead of injected — smoked or snorted directly into the nostrils.
And this new face of heroin invites disaster. It beckons those who
are afraid of the needle. It opens new markets, and it deepens the
power of the drug's addiction.

We are also concerned about new developments abroad. The vi-
cious Colombian drug cartels are moving into the business. Burma
is the major source country, but its human rights record poses a
diplomatic puzzle that our country has not yet solved.

For all these reasons, I welcome our witnesses and look forward
to hearing their views on where things stand today and what we
should be doing to make sure that America does not slip into a her-
oin epidemic.

Mr. Sensenbrenner.

Mr. Sensenbrenner. Mr. Chairman, I will waive my opening
statement so we can get right to the testimony.

Mr. SCHUMER. Thank you, Mr. Sensenbrenner. I appreciate your
cooperation and everybody's cooperation. We had to change the
times of this a few times because of other scheduling matters in the
Judiciary Committee.

Mr. Conyers.

Mr. CoNYERS. I will waive an opening statement.

Mr. ScHUMER. OK Thank you.

Mr. ScHUMER. And let's go immediately to our first panel. And,
as is obvious to everyone, our first panel is Dr. Lee Brown. He is
Director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy. Dr. Brown
coordinates the administration's drug control efforts from his Cabi-
net post. He has been asked by President Clinton to develop a new
strategy for dealing with heroin. Before accepting his current posi-
tion as drug czar, Dr. Brown served as both commissioner of the
New York City Police Department and chief of police in Houston.

I want to thank you for coming today. Dr. Brown, and I know
you have a very busy schedule. You have a flight in a little more
than an hour, so your prepared remarks will be, without objection,
entered into the record, and you may proceed as you wish.

STATEMENT OF LEE BROWN, DIRECTOR, OFFICE OF
NATIONAL DRUG CONTROL POLICY, EXECUTIVE OFFICE
OF THE PRESIDENT

Mr. Brown. Thank you, Mr. Chairman, members of the commit-
tee. I do have rather extensive prepared remarks, and I will
present this morning a modified shorter statement.

Mr. ScHUMER. Your entire remarks will be entered into the
record.

Mr. Brown. It is a privilege to be able to testify before you today
and have the opportunity to discuss the increasing concern that we
might be on the verge of a heroin epidemic. Various news accounts
over the past year nave been tracking what appears to be an in-
crease in the availability of heroin on our streets as a result of
lower prices, greater purity and bumper crops coming out of South-
east and Soutnwest Asia as well as South America.



My office, the Office of National Drug Control Policy, has been
long concerned about the seeming reemergence of heroin in this
country. Faced with reports of increased access to heroin, we have
undertaken a new study we call the Pulse Check, which is an ongo-
ing series of interviews with researchers, the police, and treatment
providers to determine the nature and extent of heroin use, be-
cause traditional survey data does not document heroin use accu-
rately.

We are finalizing a heroin strategy, at the direction of the Presi-
dent, to address the problems of trafficking production and use. To
facilitate this process I traveled this past year to Southeast Asia
and to Africa to obtain a firsthand understanding of the scope of
the problem we face.

Let me address the critical question that is on the minds of many
people, and that is, are we on the verge of a heroin epidemic? Tak-
ing everything into account, it is my belief that the United States
is not in the midst of another heroin epidemic. However, we are
seeing increased heroin consumption, but the bulk of this appears
to be the result of increased levels of use among existing drug
users.

There is an expected progression of increased tolerance among
heroin users, but we see heroin users on the rise among drug users
whose prime use or abuse is not heroin. The link is especially
strong for long-term users of cocaine, particularly in its crack form.
The evidence suggests that heroin snorting has become more com-
mon where high purity heroin is readily available.

Mr. Chairman, we estimate there are about 600,000 chronic
hardcore drug users who report heroin as their principal drug of
abuse or about 22 percent of the estimated 2.7 million hardcore
drug users in the tjnited States. We believe that an increasing
number of 2.1 million hardcore cocaine users are increasing their
use of heroin to complement cocaine use.

The typical heroin user today consumes much more than a dec-
ade ago. This is not surprising given the low price and higher pu-
rity reported.

Until recently, heroin was almost exclusively injected either
intramuscularly or intravenously. Injection is the most practical
and efficient way to administer low-purity heroin. The availability
of higher purity heroin has meant that users can now choose to
snort or smoke instead of injecting it. As a result, heroin is more
socially acceptable among a whole new group of people. The fear
of injection and injection-borne diseases such as HIV and AIDS and
hepatitis is reduced, and some of the stigma is also removed.

Data on heroin-related emergency room visits show that the
problems associated with long-term heroin use are on the rise.
Data from the Drug Abuse Warning Network — we call it the
DAWN system, which reports on drug-related activity in our hos-
pitals — shows a sharp increase in heroin emergency room inci-
dents.

Heroin use is readily becoming a greater burden on the treat-
ment system. According to data compiled by the Substance Abuse
and Mental Health Administration and the National Institute on
Drug Abuse, since the mid-1980's there has been a substantial in-



crease in reported admissions to treatment programs where heroin
is the primary drug that is abused.

Our own Pulse Checks also indicates that heroin use nationwide,
while still low, is increasing. Use is highest in the Northeast and
Midwest. The majority of heroin users are in their 30's and are in-
jecting the drug, and more younger users between the age of 21
and 30 are beginning to inhale heroin.

We have tracked heroin use and its consequences carefully and
continuously. The President's policy and budget recommendations
are a direct and targeted response to our assessment.

In our Interim National Drug Control Strategy, released in Sep-
tember 1993, and in the National Drug Control Strategy, released
in February of this year, we stated clearly that, despite the signifi-
cant decline in nonaddicted drug use from 1985 to the present, we
still have two very serious problems.

The first is the persistence of chronic or hardcore drug use. The
second is a detectable change in our young people's attitudes and
behavior with respect to illegal drugs.

Reduction in demand for drugs requires reduction in the hard-
core user population. A reduction in this population will be accom-
plished most cost-effectively through drug treatment. For this rea-
son, drug treatment for hardcore users was the central initiative in
the National Drug Control Strategy for 1994.

Expanding treatment for heavy and addicted users requires, first
of all, adding treatment capacity in our communities and also in
our criminal justice system; and, second, support for offender man-
agement programs, vocational and educational services and train-
ing for treatment staff. It means significant expenditures, but the
costs are small in relation to inaction.

Since the strategy was released in February, two major inde-
pendent studies have echoed the administration's position. In June,
the Rand Corp. reported drug treatment to be cost-effective; the
most cost-effective means of drug control intervention. And, last
month, a comprehensive study of drug treatment in the State of
California entitled "Evaluating Recovery Services: The California
Drug and Alcohol Treatment Assessment" concluded that for every
dollar invested in drug treatment in 1992, taxpayers received $7 in
savings over 1992 and 1993.

The research consistently shows that drug-dependent people who
participate in drug treatment, when compared to those who do not,
decrease their drug use, decrease their criminal activity, increase
their employment, and improve their social and interpersonal skills
and physical health.

I believe there is some agreement between the Congress and this
administration on this issue. For example, the Congress has in-
cluded injecting drug users among the priority population for drug
treatment under the substance abuse grant program.

However, Mr. Chairman, as you know, the additional $67 million
appropriated by the House-Senate conference for the substance
abuse treatment and prevention block grant for SAMSHA did not
support the administration's request to fund treatment for an addi-
tional 74,000 chronic hardcore drug users.



Serious prevention efforts include a change in attitude to con-
vince people, especially our young people, that heroin is a deadly,
highly addictive drug that destroys lives.

We have been moving aggressively to step up our efforts to edu-
cate young people about the dangers of using heroin and other il-
licit drugs. The President's budget for fiscal year 1995 requests an
additional $448 million for drug education and prevention pro-
grams, a 28-percent increase. This includes $191 million for the
Safe and Drug Free Schools and Communities Start Program. We
are targeting our prevention programs to focus on those who are
especially vulnerable to heroin use, such as the children of intra-
venous drug users, pregnant addicts and inner-city youth.

In large part as a result of your efforts, the crime bill recently
signed into law provides several important new prevention pro-
grams which will be key to changing attitudes toward drugs.

Let me briefly look at worldwide threat.

The worldwide heroin threat requires a significantly different ap-
proach than that prescribed for cocaine. The heroin industry is
much more decentralized, diversified and difficult to collect intel-
ligence on and conduct law enforcement operations against.

Like the Latin American cocaine trade, heroin traffic has become
a worldwide industry run by transnational criminal organizations.
Analysis of international trafficking trends suggest that the pro-
ceeds from retail heroin sales range from $4 to $10 billion in the
United States and from $5 to $25 billion in Europe — the two pri-
mary heroin markets.

There are other critical developments: Worldwide opium produc-
tion quadrupled in the last decade. Poppy growing areas are ex-
panding in Afghanistan and the new republics of the former Soviet
Union. Heroin addict populations, particularly in Asia, are increas-
ing. The drug cocaine cartels in Colombia are shipping heroin to
the United States.

Today at least 11 countries produce a total of 3,700 tons of illicit
opium for the international drug markets, more than double the
production of a decade ago. Heroin refinement occurs in nearly all
producing countries and some transit and consumer countries.
While Southeast Asia remains the largest producer and supplier to
the United States, heroin market requirements could easily be met
by Western Hemisphere sources.

As you know, the President has directed me to develop a sepa-
rate international drug control strategy for heroin trafficking which
is near completion. Given the decentralization, breadth, and diver-
sity of the heroin industry, there is no practical alternative to a
multidimensional and global approach involving diplomatic law en-
forcement and intelligence counterdrug initiatives in cooperation
with our allies in Asia, Africa, Latin America, the Middle East, and
Europe.

Our international heroin strategy will focus on: reducing the sup-
ply of heroin entering the United States; treating heroin trafficking
as a serious national security threat; dismantling the illicit heroin
traffic organizations by prosecuting their leaders and seizing prof-
its and assets; and expanding and intensifying contacts with for-
eign leaders to mobilize greater international cooperation against
the threat of heroin.



A source-country approach of the kind we have employed against
cocaine trafficking is not feasible. Poppies are too easily and profit-
ably grown throughout the world. The international community
must unite to deny the illicit drug industry the ability to expand
its criminal empire and undermine national security interests. And
such a strategy requires leadership and long-term political commit-
ment, as well as close coordination between our international ini-
tiatives and our domestic enforcement efforts — rather than with
dollars alone.

The strategy has several key components: to heighten inter-
national attention, to emphasize a multilateral and regional ap-
proach, to support indigenous programs and to attack the traffick-
ing infrastructure.

On the regional approach, in many major heroin source and tran-
sit countries the United States has important national security in-
terests that extend beyond drugs. Our heroin strategy seeks to op-
timize our very limited counternarcotics resources as well as care-
fully target those coimtries and regions that pose the most direct
heroin threat to the domestic health and national security interests
of the United States.

If we look briefly at Southeast Asia, since more than 60 percent
of the heroin sold in the United States comes from Southeast Asia,
our primary heroin control priority will be to reduce this flow. This
requires a strong international attack on the trafficking and finan-
cial kingpins outside Burma, and a diplomatic campaign to encour-
age political reform and greater counternarcotic efforts in Burma.

As a result of my recent trip to Southeast Asia, I have concluded
that we have to increase our diplomatic efforts, highlighting co-
operation, to influence Burma's neighbors — especially China and
Thailand — to exert more narcotics control pressure on the Govern-
ment of Burma by emphasizing to them the regional threat poised
by Burma's heroin trade.

Burma continues to be the world's largest opium producer with
the production areas located outside of government control. In iden-
tifying counternarcotics action that the Burmese must take, we
must capitalize on the Burmese Government's desire for acceptance
into the international community. We should be able to test the
military regime's seriousness without undermining other aspects of
U.S. policy.

Particularly, I believe that there are steps we can take with the
Government of Burma that will not undermine our strong support
for human rights. For example, we can speak to the Government
of Burma about the problem of heroin trafficking and discuss the
possibility of sharing actionable information. Such an exchange
would permit us to measure the Burmese Government's actions
and accomplishments. This would also serve to send a message to
our friends in Southeast Asia, particularly China and Thailand,
that we are serious about the heroin problem.

Thailand remains key to our regional program. I had discussions
in Bangkok with Thai officials about the future of our cooperative
effort. They are eager to continue this important relationship and
have agreed to work even more closely with us against narcotics
trafficking elements in Thailand.



We also would increase support to the United Nations Drug Con-
trol Program's Subregional Project, working with Burma and its
neighbors to reduce opium production and enhance regional co-
operation.

Laos is a good example of what is possible. With the help of the
United Nations, Laos has developed a comprehensive drug control
program that can serve as a model for other producing countries.
The plan seeks to significantly reduce poppy cultivation and drug
addiction by the year 2000. It also calls for judicial reform and new
legislation for Laos to sign and implement the Vienna Convention.

In looking at Southeast Asia, in view of Afghanistan's importance
as a major opium source country, the United States has established
the principle that assistance to major drug-producing areas should
be in the context of a plan to reduce opium growing and processing.
We will encourage Pakistan to make a serious effort to reduce pro-
duction and increase investigative efforts on high-level trafficking.
The United States will provide appropriate judicial training to en-
hance Pakistan's capability to successfully prosecute, convict, or ex-
tradite major traffickers.

Changes in worldwide opium production and trafficking patterns
are increasing Turkey's importance for processing, transshipment
and as a clearinghouse linking the Southwest Asian trade to Euro-
pean, Middle Eastern, and North American markets. U.S. policy
will continue to promote Turkish political will and commitment to
improve investigative and prosecutorial capability, target well-es-
tablished drug syndicates, and assist with the technical expertise
required to undertake this task.

Briefly, if we look at Latin America, opium poppies are being
grown in Mexico, Colombia, Peru, and Venezuela. Colombia pre-
sents a major new heroin supply threat. The cartels have all the
prerequisites to capture a large part of the U.S. domestic heroin
market: sufficient poppy cultivation to meet U.S. supply needs;
product quality is high; cocaine and retailing capabilities are well


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Online LibraryUnited States. Congress. House. Committee on the JHeroin trafficking : hearing before the Subcommittee on Crime and Criminal Justice of the Committee on the Judiciary, House of Representatives, One Hundred Third Congress, second session, September 29, 1994 → online text (page 1 of 8)