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Drug Intelligence Center
Connecticut Drug Threat Assessment Update
Marijuana poses another significant drug threat to Connecticut. Of the 47 law enforcement respondents to the NDTS 2002 in Connecticut, 21 reported marijuana was a high threat in their jurisdictions. According to TEDS data, marijuana-related admissions to publicly funded treatment facilities in Connecticut increased from 3,647 in 1999 to 3,782 in 2001. (See Table 1 in Heroin section.) The percentage of Connecticut residents aged 12 or older who reported having abused marijuana in the past month (5.7%) was statistically comparable to the percentage nationwide (4.8%), according to combined data from the 1999 and the 2000 NHSDA.
Marijuana is the most readily available illicit drug in Connecticut. FDSS data indicate that federal law enforcement officials in Connecticut seized 45.8 kilograms of marijuana in 2002. The percentage of drug-related federal sentences in Connecticut that were marijuana-related in FY2001 (28.3%) was lower than the percentage nationwide (32.8%), according to USSC data. (See Table 2 in Heroin section.)
Most of the marijuana available in Connecticut is produced in Mexico; however, locally produced marijuana and Canada-produced marijuana also are available. Commercial-grade marijuana available in the state sold for $600 to $1,500 per pound, $75 to $160 per ounce, $5 to $20 per bag, and $2 per joint (marijuana cigarette) in the first quarter of FY2003, according to the DEA Boston Division. Sinsemilla (high potency marijuana) sold for $1,000 to $6,000 per pound, $100 to $600 per ounce, and $40 per bag during the same period.
Mexican criminal groups are the dominant transporters of marijuana into Connecticut; however, Caucasian, Jamaican, and other Hispanic criminal groups as well as crews and local independent dealers of various ethnic backgrounds also transport marijuana into the state. Most of the marijuana available in Connecticut is transported from Mexico to southwestern states, then transported to Connecticut primarily via package delivery services. Additional quantities are transported via private and commercial vehicles and couriers aboard commercial aircraft. Caucasian criminal groups smuggle high quality, Canada-produced marijuana across the U.S.-Canada border primarily via private vehicles and couriers on foot. Couriers on foot typically rendezvous with coconspirators near the U.S.-Canada border, who then transport the marijuana to Connecticut via private vehicles.
Caucasian, Dominican, Jamaican, Mexican, and other Hispanic criminal groups are the principal wholesale-level distributors of marijuana in Connecticut. Local independent dealers of various ethnic backgrounds distribute marijuana at the retail level in the state. Marijuana typically is sold from private residences as well as at bars and nightclubs and on college campuses. Marijuana sold at the retail level usually is packaged in plastic bags or sold as joints (marijuana cigarettes) or blunts (hollowed-out cigars refilled with marijuana).
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