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GetSmart About Drugs - A DEA Resource for Parents

News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 19, 2002

Attorney General Unveils Drug Strategy Plan at DEA Headquarters

Click here for the full text of the Attorney General's speech.

Click here for the full text of Administrator Hutchinson's speech.

photo of Attorney General John Ashcroft and DEA Administrator Asa Hutchinson
Attorney General John Ashcroft
and
DEA Administrator
Asa Hutchinson

 

photo of Attorney General John Ashcroft
Attorney General John Ashcroft

DEA Administrator Asa Hutchinson welcomed United States Attorney General John Ashcroft, United States Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson, and Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) Director John Walters to DEA this afternoon. Mr. Hutchinson noted that this was the first time that two Cabinet members had visited DEA at the same time, indicating the importance of drug law enforcement to the President of the United States. Attorney General Ashcroft visited with DEA employees briefly before unveiling the DOJ's new drug control strategy at a press conference at DEA headquarters. Mr. Hutchinson introduced Mr. Ashcroft saying, "I believe that the leadership…continues with Attorney General Ashcroft…[who has led] with compassion, conviction and strong motivation."

Mr. Ashcroft's new drug control strategy is composed of six goals:

  • Reduce availability of U.S. drug supply using reliable estimates of current amount as a benchmark
  • Combine the efforts of DOJ, DEA and ONDCP to create the first-ever unified list of targeted drug traffickers.
  • Devote federal resources to destroying the "root and branches" of targeted drug-trafficking organizations
  • Identify major drug-trafficking organizations through cooperation with the nine regional Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF).
  • Conduct financial investigations of major drug-trafficking organizations
  • Redirect resources to identified "hot spots" where drug-trafficking is heaviest.

Mr. Ashcroft also announced that Deputy Attorney General Thompson would be coordinating the enforcement aspect of the drug strategy. In Mr. Thompson's remarks, he focused heavily on the role OCDETF would play in the plan, indicating that each of the nine offices would be responsible for developing a regional plan and that they would be responsible for undertaking the financial investigations.

Director Walters remarks underscored the President's dedication to lowering the nation's dependence on drugs. He agreed that "surrender is not an option" as Mr. Ashcroft had previously stated and suggested that this new strategy would disrupt the drug market - first driving it into recession and then into depression.

photo - Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson, AG Ashcroft, Administrator Hutchinson and John Walters
(L-R) United States Deputy Attorney General Larry Thompson, United States
Attorney General John Ashcroft, DEA Administrator Asa Hutchinson, and Office
of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) John Walters at DEA Headquarters.
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