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New York Laws and Programs

  • By: Rosalind Kopfstein
  • In: Encyclopedia of Drug Policy
  • Edited by: Mark A. R. Kleiman & James E. Hawdon
  • Subject:Public Policy, Drug Crimes

New York State has a long history of drug use laws and policies. Along with large multinational drug trafficking organizations operating within the state, New York City also serves as a major entry port for drug smuggling through its transportation hubs. Drug distribution networks then disperse these drugs throughout the country and to Canada and to Europe. As a financial center, New York City also offers opportunities for the disbursement and laundering of drug funds.

Rockefeller Laws

Beginning in 1973, New York State's Rockefeller Drug Laws legislated mandatory and harsh sentences for both drug users and drug sellers with no judicial discretion permitted. The initial purpose of the laws was to send drug criminals to jail for extended periods of time, even for minor offenses. These ...

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