History of Methamphetamine Creation, usage, and perspectives Sharon Zandman-Zeman, RN Anchorage Neighborhood Health Center and Detective Kurt Kornchuk Anchorage Police Department For The Alaska Forum on Crystal Methamphetamine The History of Methamphetamine • Amphetamine was first synthesized in 1887 by German chemist L. Edeleano. • Methamphetamine was first synthesized in 1919 by Japanese chemist A. Ogata – Method of production was ephedrine reduction using red phosphorous and iodine – Easily injectable The History of Methamphetamine • 1930’s – Marketed as an over-the-counter treatment for asthmatics • By 1937 a prescription was required – Reducing activity in hyperactive children – Treating narcolepsy patients – Appetite suppressant (a major clinical use) The History of Methamphetamine • World War II – Distributed to allied and axis troops for use as a stimulant – Provided to some American forces – Widely distributed by Germans to SS troops to increase efficiency of soldiers – Also provided to Japanese soldiers in large quantities The History of Methamphetamine Post-war Japanese military surplus of amphetamines flooded the market causing skyrocketing addiction. The History of Methamphetamine • The 1950’s saw the use of amphetamine & methamphetamine spread and so did the abuse and addiction. – Widely prescribed by doctors under loose government controls. – Obtained by prescription for use as a diet pill and also the treatment of narcolepsy. – Large scale diversion, used non-medically by college students, truck drivers, and athletes. The History of Methamphetamine • The 1960’s saw the beginning of methamphetamine produced in clandestine laboratories. – West Coast phenomena – Drug culture expands The History of Methamphetamine The 1960’s also saw the rise of outlaw motorcycle gangs who controlled the clandestine manufacture and distribution of methamphetamine in the U.S., primarily on the West Coast. The History of Methamphetamine • In 1970 legal production of amphetamines reached an all-time high of 12 billion tablets annually. • The Controlled Substances Act of 1970 went into effect controlling the manufacture and distribution of amphetamines. – Legal production of amphetamine drops 80% – Black market created for methamphetamine The History of Methamphetamine • On the West Coast, the number of clandestine methamphetamine laboratories increase. – P2P (Phenyl-2-propanone) method – Fairly sophisticated process utilizing laboratory chemicals, apparatus and glassware The History of Methamphetamine • In 1980 P2P becomes a controlled substance • A black market emerges for P2P using – Phenylacetic Acid – Sodium Acetate – Acetic Anhydride The History of Methamphetamine • The 1970’s to the 1980’s are considered the “Golden Years of Clandestine Methamphetamine Laboratories” – Biker groups manufacturing 5 to 25 lb batches – Drug laws lag behind methods of manufacturing – Violence The History of Methamphetamine • In 1988 the Chemical Diversion and Trafficking Act created “listed chemicals” and federal requirements for threshold amounts. – Ephedrine – Bulk pseudoephedrine (not tablets) – Phenylacetic Acid – Hydriodic Acid – Methylamine – Ethyl Ether and other chemicals The History of Methamphetamine • 1990’s – the proliferation of Mexican national “Super-labs” – Large scale production (50 to 150 lb batches) using the ephedrine/pseudoephedrine reduction method – Use of established drug trafficking rings for distribution – Distribution expands to the North & Eastern parts of the U.S. – Control of methamphetamine trade shifts from OMG’s to Mexican criminal organizations – Rogue pseudoephedrine tablet industry emerges The History of Methamphetamine • 1994, Expansion of the Federal Chemical Diversion and Trafficking Act – Import/export thresholds – Expansion of “Listed Chemicals” – Import license and DEA registration requirements • Methamphetamine Control Act of 1996 – Blister-pack requirements for retailers of pseudoephedrine The History of Methamphetamine • Mid 1990’s, brought chemical regulations and the expansion of the Internet. • Continued expansion of Mexican national “Super Labs”. • Explosion of smaller, less sophisticated methamphetamine laboratories using retail chemicals and improvised laboratory equipment. – Tweeker Labs – Small toxic labs – Mom and Pop labs – Addiction based labs The History of Methamphetamine • Chemicals from retail stores used in the clandestine manufacture of methamphetamine – Pseudoephedrine tablets – Safety match book striker strips – Iodine – Denatured alcohol – Coleman and other camp fuels – Anhydrous ammonia thefts from industry/supply The History of Methamphetamine • Smaller clandestine laboratories move North and East while the Mexican national “Super Labs” remained primarily in the West • Mid-West and the Pacific Northwest become inundated with addiction based laboratories • The Mid-West greatly impacted The History of Methamphetamine • The first recent seizure of a methamphetamine laboratory in Alaska was in 1996 in 70 Anchorage 60 50 40 Labs 30 20 10 0 Year '96 '98 '00 '02 '04 The History of Methamphetamine • With the increase in clandestine methamphetamine laboratories in Alaska came the increase in collateral damage – Fires and explosions – Severely burned individuals – Health problems – Addiction problems – Massive property damage and contamination The History of Methamphetamine 21st Century • Pseudoephedrine legislation – Adopted by many states – Decrease in clandestine methamphetamine seizures and collateral damage • Increase in Mexican criminal organization trafficking of “ICE” methamphetamine • Increase in Canadian accountability of pseudoephedrine The History of Methamphetamine Closing • On-going campaign against methamphetamine with multiple fronts – Courts, adequate bail and sentences – Law enforcement – Legislation – Regulatory enforcement – Treatment/Prevention – Drug Endangered Children Protocols The History of Methamphetamine • Current Battles – Pseudoephedrine industry and lobbyists – Developing effective pseudoephedrine legislation – Enforcement • Clandestine laboratories • Mexican criminal organizations – Education • Children • Adults • Property Owners • Retail operators • The Courts • Elected Officials Questions?