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National Drug Intelligence Center.



Massachusetts Drug Threat Assessment Update

Massachusetts Drug Threat Assessment Update.

Publication Date: April  2002

Document ID: 2002-S0377MA-001

Available Massachusetts Assessments:
  2003 Update: May 2003   
  2002 Update: April 2002  
         Original: April 2001

Archived on:  January 1, 2006. This document may contain dated information. It remains available to provide access to historical materials.

This report is a brief update to the Massachusetts Drug Threat Assessment, which is a strategic assessment of the status and outlook of the drug threat to Massachusetts. Analytical judgment determined the threat posed by each drug type or category, taking into account the most current quantitative and qualitative information on availability, demand, production or cultivation, transportation, and distribution, as well as the effects of a particular drug on abusers and society as a whole. While NDIC sought to incorporate the latest available information, a time lag often exists between collection and publication of data. NDIC anticipates that this update will be useful to policymakers, law enforcement personnel, and treatment providers at the federal, state, and local levels. 

The Massachusetts Drug Threat Assessment was produced in April 2001 and is available on NDIC's web site or by contacting the NDIC dissemination line at 814-532-4541.

Your questions, comments, and suggestions for future subjects are welcome at any time.  Addresses are provided at the end of the page.
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Other Dangerous Drugs
  Diverted Pharmaceuticals




List of Tables 

Table 1. Drug-Related Treatment Admissions to Publicly Funded Facilities, Massachusetts, 1994-1999
Table 2. Drug-Related Deaths, Boston, 1996-2000


The distribution and abuse of illicit drugs and the diversion and abuse of prescription drugs pose significant threats to the safety of Massachusetts residents. Colombian and Dominican criminal groups in New York City supply heroin and cocaine to criminal groups in Greater Boston, Holyoke, Springfield, and Worcester. The Greater Boston area--including the cities of Lawrence, Lowell, and Lynn--is the primary drug distribution center in Massachusetts. Holyoke, Springfield, and Worcester are secondary distribution centers. Criminal groups in these areas supply drugs to cities throughout Massachusetts as well as in New Hampshire and Vermont.

Heroin has emerged as the greatest drug threat to Massachusetts, especially in urban areas such as Boston, Holyoke, Springfield, and Worcester. Cocaine remains a serious drug threat, particularly in rural areas of the state. Marijuana is readily available and commonly abused but poses a lower threat than heroin or cocaine because its effects are less debilitating and it is not commonly associated with violent crime. Other dangerous drugs such as MDMA, GHB, LSD, ketamine, and diverted pharmaceuticals are popular among adolescents and young adults. Methamphetamine, which is available in limited quantities in Massachusetts, is not considered a significant threat.


National Drug Intelligence Center
319 Washington Street, 5th Floor
Johnstown, PA 15901

Tel. (814) 532-4601
FAX (814) 532-4690

National Drug Intelligence Center
8201 Greensboro Drive, Suite 1001
McLean, VA 22102-3840

Tel. (703) 556-8970
FAX (703) 556-7807


Web Addresses

ADNET:  http://ndicosa 

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