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AL Anti-Meth Law Aiding In Large Chambers County Meth Decrease

CHAMBERS COUNTY, AL – In a press conference this Thursday morning Chambers County law enforcement officials said it’s Alabama’s anti-meth laws that have aided in a dramatic decrease in meth arrests. 

"Alabama is leading the nation through our efforts to prevent meth production and use in our communities…in Chambers County we have made tremendous progress…" Chambers County Sheriff Sid Lockhart said.

In 2012 Alabama changed it’s anti-meth laws, which among other things cut back the amount of meth ingredient pseudoephedrine could be bought at pharmacies with proper photo ID, and made the practice, known as smurfing a felony. 

"…before these laws were passed in 2012 chambers county made over 120 meth-related arrests…this year, we have made only 13…" Chambers County Drug Task Force Project Director, Lt. Robert Chambers said.

As the amount of arrests have gone down, so has the amount of meth labs seized.  In Chambers County this year law enforcement officials seized only one meth lab just a couple of weeks ago.  That’s a dramatic decrease since 2011 when Chambers County law enforcement officials recovered around 88 labs.

"…in 2013, chambers county and surrounding counties accounted for over 1,050 blocked sales of pseudoephedrine products…" Valley Police Chief Tommy Weldon said.

Officials said that progress wouldn’t be possible without the law required, NPLEx system in Alabama pharmacies. 

"…this is electronic point of purchase sale…this allows the pharmacist to know whether a customer has been buying pseudoephedrine, looking to buy pseudoephedrine…and it lets them know if they’ve already reached their monthly limit…" District Attorney Chief Assistant Damon Lewis said.

Officials said no other legislation worked so well in helping them on the streets as they crack down on meth

Meth seizures as a whole in Alabama has decreased dramatically as well.  According to the Alabama Drug Abuse Task Force it’s decreased from 720 in 2010 to 154 in 2013.