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An evolution in drug trafficking

Regular readers of our Cincinnati criminal defense blog know that there are always new illegal drugs gaining in popularity as some older substances fade. Methamphetamine apparently use has declined in recent years as demand for opioids has surged.

The recent arrest of a man in northeastern Ohio on drug trafficking charges might be an indication of how the meth trade is evolving. The 39-year-old is accused of transporting liquid methamphetamine on an airplane flight from Oklahoma to Pittsburgh and then driving into Ohio.

The Jefferson County Drug Task Force believes the suspect intended to sell the approximately 50 grams of the substance in the Steubenville area.

According to a website for a substance abuse clinic, liquid meth is a relatively new form of methamphetamine. Liquefying the drug makes it easier to transport, the site says, and apparently can help manufacturers boost the potency of meth as well.

The liquid form of the drug is reportedly popular in Eastern Europe. Like the solid form, the liquid form can be cooked up in a relatively short amount of time with ingredients that can be easily and legally obtained.

Liquid meth has reportedly also been applied to sheets of paper and then dried in efforts to ship the substance from country to country and city to city.

As is so often the case with illegal drugs, the trafficking of the substance often involves addicts who are little more than slaves to their physical craving for the drugs. Experts say that incarceration does little to ease drug use; they have over the years encouraged law enforcement and the criminal justice system to focus more on alternatives that can help addicts resume productive lives.

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