Crystal Meth Scare

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A stronger version of crystal meth is hitting the streets of Mobile through Mexican drug smugglers.

Mobile County Sheriff Jack Tillman said ice, an alternate and more pure form of crystal meth, is being manufactured in Mexican "super labs" and being transported into Mobile County by large groups of Hispanic males.

The sheriff said yesterday that local mom and pop labs have kind of disappeared. He credits new state laws restricting the purchase of over-the-counter cold medications.

Chief Deputy Mark Barlow said ice takes longer to make than crystal-meth and is made with slightly different ingredients. He said the drug goes through an additional cooking and recrystallization process.

According to Sheriff's spokeswoman Christina Bowersox, four men were arrested Friday for drug trafficking charges involving ice.

Undercover officers believe drug smugglers are bringing as much as 10 pounds of ice into Mobile County every two weeks.