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News stories tagged with "drugs"

James Roche was denied judicial diversion. His judge is less likely than other judges to give treatment people who sell drugs.
James Roche was denied judicial diversion. His judge is less likely than other judges to give treatment people who sell drugs.

Rockefeller law reforms give some addicts a new chance, others get jail

Last year the New York State Legislature voted to give drug addicts a second chance, by doing away with the last remnants of the Rockefeller drug laws. Some considered the old laws draconian and reformers praised the change saying it could stop the addiction cycle by diverting addicts bound for prison and instead send them to treatment. For the last couple months, reporter Charles Lane has been investigating how this judicial diversion has been implemented so far across the state. And he finds that the impact of the reforms largely depends on which county the addict is convicted in. Photos and timeline courtesy of WSHU.  Go to full article

Following the drug law reform beat

Earlier this morning, we heard about drug sentences handed down under the newly-reformed Rockefeller drug laws. The reforms lifted the Rockefeller laws' sentencing mandates, giving judges in New York's 62 counties discretion in sentencing. In his story, Charles Lane introduced us to two was sentenced by a Long island judge to a rehab program, though she was convicted for drug sales. The other was sentenced in Saratoga County to do time at Bare Hill Correctional facility in Malone, not rehab, though he was an addict looking for treatment.  Go to full article

Personal care products play role in behavioral disorders?

The Vermont Senate is expected to take a final vote this week on a bill that would phase out the chemical bisphenol-A in some types of packaging. The bill would ban use of the chemical in reusable food and beverage containers, as well as infant formula and baby food containers. Planned Parenthood of Northern New England says BPA has been linked to a high number of health problems, including infertility, miscarriage, and breast and prostate cancer. The American Chemistry Council, an industry group, maintains that it is safe and helps keep food safe by keeping it fresh.

There's been a rise in reports of behavioral disorders in kids over the past decade or so. Some researchers say genetics, lack of sleep, and chaotic households all contribute to things like ADHD. Now researchers say another cause could be personal care products. Julie Grant reports.  Go to full article

Illegal drugs in wastewater

A new report tracks illegal drug use by looking at wastewater. Rebecca Williams has more.  Go to full article

Eight arrested in drug bust

Police arrested eight people and seized more than $1.3 million in cash this week in connection with a large drug smuggling ring operating between the North Country and Ohio. Martha Foley has more.  Go to full article

Drugs in water

Clean water rules dating back to the 1970s have made dramatic differences in the health of US waterways. But there's increasing recognition of a new threat - one that's traced back not to big industrial plants, but to household drains. The drugs we take are showing up in our drinking water, and they're showing up in fish. The federal government's now saying that in most cases, you should never flush unused drugs down the drain. There are safer ways to dispose of them. But even if you want to do the right thing, it's not always easy. Rebecca Williams takes a look at what you should and should not do with your medications.  Go to full article

Mohawks: tobacco smuggling answers lie in cooperation

Last week, the Center for Public Integrity released an exhaustive investigation on the confluence of illegal tobacco, drugs, and organized crime on the Mohawk reservations on the St. Lawrence River. Yesterday we spoke with the report's author.

Today, the Mohawks' side of things. Chiefs of the St. Regis Mohawk Tribe near Massena say Canada and the United States are raising cigarette taxes without considering historic tribal rights to trade tobacco. Chief Jim Ransom says the author of the Center for Public Integrity report didn't even request an interview with tribal chiefs. The Mohawks have endured a reputation as smugglers even before tobacco companies worked with some natives to traffic untaxed cigarettes into Canada in the 1990s. This year's surprise hit film, Frozen River, has brought Akwesasne's reputation to the big screen and the nation. Chief Ransom told David Sommerstein he condemns the drug trafficking and crime that happens in Akwesasne. But he says the characterization ignores the history of oppression and environmental degradation brought on the Mohawks.  Go to full article

Report ties organized crime, drugs to Akwesasne tobacco trafficking

A new report details the billion dollar trafficking of untaxed cigarettes into Canada from the Akwesasne Mohawk reservation near Massena. The investigation by the Center for Public Integrity documented 5 to 10 unlicensed tobacco factories in Akwesasne and on the Kahnawake reserve near Montreal.

Smugglers carry cigarettes across the Canadian border and sell them in Ontario and Quebec for $20 a carton. A legally taxed carton costs $80 to $90. The Canadian government estimates it is losing $1.6 billion a year in taxes while health care costs associated with smoking are rising. William Marsden of the Montreal Gazette reported the story. He told David Sommerstein the tobacco smuggling has attracted more organized crime and drugs to an already porous region of the U.S.-Canada border.  Go to full article

Senate passes drug law changes

The State Senate approved sweeping changes to the Rockfeller drug laws last night as a part of the state budget. Karen DeWitt reports.  Go to full article

NYC gangs migrating North

Gang activity, including illegal drug trade, is up sharply in Glens Falls. Martha Foley reports.  Go to full article

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