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Anti-Smurfing Campaign in Alabama

By: Deanna Bettineschi Email
By: Deanna Bettineschi Email

State officials launched an anti-smurfing campaign this morning.
It may be a funny name but there's nothing funny about its intentions.

In the state of Alabama, if you go to buy any cold medicine with pseudoephedrine in it , you have to show your id.
Your information is then put into a statewide database, to make sure you're not abusing the drug.
However, law enforcement officers have run into the issue of smurfing.

“Smurfing is when someone who makes meth pays you to go to a pharmacy like Northcutt’s and purchases your monthly allotment of pseudoephedrine.” Consumer Healthcare Products Association’s Rick Heartsill said.

The person then gives the purchase to the meth cooker.

“In the past that’s been a misdemeanor under the new law the Alabama legislature passed this year, it’s a felony which means if you do it you’re going to go to jail.” Heartsill said.

State officials say the bill had a lot of support.

“I think the bill was supported greatly across the board from all sides of the aisle.” Alabama senator Harri Anne Smith said.

Officials hope the anti-smurfing campaign will make people aware of how serious the new law is.

“The Alabama law is probably the toughest law in the nation,” Heartsill said.

“We wanted to have one of the toughest laws in the United States because it will protect families.” Smith said.

And local pharmacists like Glen Northcutt are excited criminals will be deterred from his business.

“So I think it definitely limits the purchases of pseudoephedrine in this particular area.” Pharmacist Glen Northcutt said.

Law enforcement officers say they're also going to focus in on those bringing meth in from Mexico, since Dothan connects to major highways.


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