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Hawaii Drug Threat Assessment
May 2002


Crystal methamphetamine abuse will continue to represent the most significant drug threat to Hawaii. Methamphetamine will remain the predominant drug problem in the state and will represent a greater threat than any other illegal drug. Methamphetamine production and conversion of powdered methamphetamine to crystal methamphetamine will continue to increase in Hawaii because of growing demand. Violent crime associated with methamphetamine production, distribution, and abuse will increase. Mexican criminal groups will continue to dominate the transportation and distribution of crystal and powdered methamphetamine in Hawaii.

Marijuana will continue to be widely available and frequently abused in Hawaii. Availability could increase due to more instate cultivation. Despite an effective eradication program, the amount of marijuana produced in Hawaii will continue to meet the demands of drug abusers in the state. Cannabis growers will continue to exploit remote areas of the state for outdoor cultivation. However, growers may cultivate cannabis indoors in an effort to evade law enforcement detection. Pacific Islander and other local independent dealers will continue to be the primary wholesale and retail distributors of marijuana throughout the state.

Heroin will likely become an increasing threat to Hawaii. Mexican black tar heroin will become more widely available. Mexican criminal groups will continue to transport heroin along with other drugs directly from the mainland and distribute them at the wholesale level.

The distribution and abuse of primarily crack cocaine will remain a problem in Hawaii. Cocaine abuse will likely stabilize at low levels, and demand for cocaine may decline. Pacific Islander independent dealers and Mexican criminal groups will continue to transport cocaine into Hawaii, primarily from the West Coast, and distribute the drug at the wholesale level. Pacific Islander independent dealers and Samoan and Tongan street gangs will continue to distribute cocaine at the retail level.

Other dangerous drugs, particularly MDMA, will gain in popularity in Hawaii. The threat posed by club drugs, primarily MDMA, GHB, and LSD, is of increasing concern to law enforcement authorities. In addition, law enforcement authorities throughout the state identify the abuse of diverted pharmaceuticals, especially OxyContin, as a growing threat, and diversion of it and other pharmaceuticals will in all likelihood increase. Caucasian criminal groups and local independent dealers will remain the primary wholesale distributors of ODDs.


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