“Disrupt, dismantle and destroy” may sound like a military slogan, but it’s what Timothy Shea says is the guiding principle of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration. Shea, DEA’s acting administrator, tells the Providence Journal that, “Violent crime is fueled in part by drug trafficking (and) the violence is something we can’t forget about.” He says the illegal drug trade is harming economic development in U.S. cities and towns. Mexican smugglers continue to call the shots when it comes to the supply line into the U.S., Shea says: “You have some Dominican gangs, but ultimately it’s Mexico that controls it.”
In Shea’s view, the coronavirus pandemic has created a unique situation at the southern border. He explains that limiting cross-border travel to control the spread of the pandemic has created this dynamic: Mexican cartels have stockpiled drugs on one side of the border, while traffickers on the U.S. side are “awash with money” waiting for travel restrictions to be eased. “We’re expecting a flood of drugs into the U.S.,” he said, once the restrictions are lifted. Shea is concerned about the growing influx of illegally produced fentanyl and methamphetamine being manufactured in Mexican cartel drug labs. He cited the Sinaloa Cartel and Jalisco New Generation Cartel (CJNG) as the two major players in the Mexican drug trade. The CJNG has gained international attention after police say it engaged in hanging headless corpses from highway bridges as a warning to other Mexican drug gangs.
Read more: thecrimereport.org