NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Drug War Success Questioned

February 5, 2001

The Drug Enforcement Administration exaggerated its success in a 36-nation anti-drug operation last fall, according to a Miami Herald report.

  • The newspaper's probe of the DEA's "Operation Libertador" found some numbers on the burning of marijuana plants were double-counts of a nearly 20-year-old State Department program.
  • And while the DEA claimed $30.2 million in criminal assets were seized during the operation, $30 million of that was taken four weeks before the operation started.
  • The exercise reported 2,876 arrests, but nearly 1,000 of those were misdemeanor marijuana arrests and the DEA could not account for 375 others.

Source: John Bacon, "DEA operation draws scrutiny," Nationline, USA Today, February 2, 2001.


Browse more articles on Government Issues