Category Archives: Law and Order

American Patriot Militiamen Descend on Town Ahead of Monday Deadline for Oregon Ranchers to Turn Themselves In

This Monday, Oregon ranchers Dwight Hammond and his son Steve are to turn themselves in and be imprisoned in what can only be said to be Double Jeopardy that is being imposed by a federal judge, whose authority to even rule in the matter is not justified by the US Constitution. However, days ahead of the deadline, several patriots and militiamen showed up to provide a Constitutional barrier to the tyranny of the federal government and the Bureau of Land Management.

Chief U.S. District Judge Ann Aiken has attempted to put Dwight, 73, and Steve, 46, in prison for several years for fires they started, which ranchers do all the time as part of caring for the land. Keep in mind that one of these fires is nearly two decades old while the other is a decade old. Both men severed time in prison already, even though there was no reason for them to do so, since the BLM does the exact same thing with devastating consequences.

Reports from Oregon Live have been detailing how the militia from all over the country have been moving into the territory of the Harney Basin. Many of those involved were involved in the Bundy Ranch siege in 2014.

"I am here now trying to empower and motivate the people of this community to take a stand against tyranny and show them that I will gladly stand with them," Jon Ritzheimer said.

The militia groups have been encouraging the residents to stand alongside them against the tyranny that has become the federal government and the BLM.

However, many in the community want them to go home. Signs have been put up in yards of homes that read, "Go Home Bundys!" and even a warning was issued by "The Committee" that reads:

Any individuals or groups of individuals that detain or attempt to detain any US Citizen Resident of Harney County will not be tolerated. Self-appointed militia, household troops or other unaffiliated armed group garrisoned in the confines of this county be warned. Any detention of our citizen residents will be dealt with rapidly and with great retribution. This is your only warning.

image: http://freedomoutpost.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/010316_0004_AmericanPat1.jpg

 American Patriot Militiamen Descend on Town Ahead of Monday Deadline for Oregon Ranchers to Turn Themselves In

Frankly, no militia member has pushed for any of this propaganda put out by "The Committee." However, the Constitution is clear about Constitutional troops and it clearly outlines who the militia is and what they can do.

In fact, when people look back on the Bundy Ranch siege, they can see clearly that the Bundys and the militia won the day because they stood fast against the same tyrannical BLM that now threatens the Hammond family.

The only problem is that the media is largely silent on this important news story. As a side note, look, if you don’t like me, that’s fine, but get this story out. A family’s future is at stake and if you won’t speak out for them now, who will be around to speak out for you when it is your livelihood and property on the line?

Oregon Live reported on several residents in the area and their dissent concerning the militia:

Chris Briels, Burns fire chief for 24 years, said he was intrigued by the constitutional arguments rai sed by Payne and Bundy. But he said he also felt pushed too hard by Bundy to act. Briels said he is no anarchist.

The militia, Briels said, "seems like a bunch of people ready to shoot.  I don’t want that in my county."

Melodi Molt, a rancher and former president of Oregon CattleWomen, joined Briels on the new committee. She’s troubled by what’s happened to the Hammonds – but also worried about what her community faces with the outsiders.

"We’re not from the militia," said Molt. "We’re not going to come in with guns and overthrow the government."

First, upholding the law is not anarchy. That is what the federal judge and the BLM are engaged in. Second, militia is comprised of people from every state. So, both Briels and Molt are completely wrong in their assessment of the situation.

Furthermore, let’s point something out: The State of Oregon owns the land, not the federal government, and even that should be altered and put into the hand of the citizens of the State. For more on how the land is State land and not federal land, click here and here.

The BLM is administrative only in the area and has no power to enforce anything.

However, the question does need to be asked, why do so many in the area oppose the militia coming in to aid their neighbors who are being terrorized by the federal government?

The answer may just be quite simple and it has everything to do with Agenda 21 and the Rockefeller Corporation.

Consider that the Rockefeller Corporation provides work grants for the West Coast Infrastructure Exchange. On top of that, the Oregon State Treasury is a benefactor of Rockefeller grants. A large part of the people in the area have jobs because of this!

On top of all of this, the area has a high possibility of being very lucrative in oil and is a part of the Agenda 21 scheme. But are the people fighting Agenda 21 in their area? Nope! In fact, the area has received a ton of grant money to advance Agenda 21. Think they are opposed to the militia coming in for no reason? Do you think these people care at all about the Hammonds? I don’t think so, but the militia and others do care. We’ll see how far this goes at the beginning of the week as Operation Hammond Freedom is underway! Please keep these patriots and the Hammonds in your prayers and if you are able, seek to join them!

Lorri Anderson contributed to the information contained in this article and has provided us a link to the live feed for full coverage of what is taking place.

People across America have been following the Hammond case out of Burns, Oregon due to the overreach by the federal government. Pete Santilli is covering the Rally in support of the Hammond’s and taking a stand against unconstitutional actions live. Constitutional Sheriff Richard Mack of CSPOA.ORG, Ammon Bundy, veterans, patriots, and protesters have come from across this nation and Canada to speak out and tell the federal government to stop with their unconstitutional actions and oppression in a peaceful manner. Standing in the gap and speaking out for the voiceless and oppressed.

To see live footage see video below.

"The American Patriot does not follow the path of least resistance, but resists because it’s right. In the face of fear, oppression, and tyranny they stand. Their soul binds them to a duty that cannot be bought nor sold. They stand and speak for the voiceless, weak, and oppressed just as Jesus did." Lorri Anderson

Read more at http://freedomoutpost.com/2016/01/american-patriot-militiamen-descend-on-town-ahead-of-monday-deadline-for-oregon-ranchers-to-turn-themselves-in/#luoBSYBhsY4Q7zjo.99

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INTERNMENT AND RESETTLEMENT OPERATIONS FM 3-39.40

PLEASE BE AWARE OF THIS INFORMATION

WHICH IS AVAILABLE VIA THE INTERNET.  "PUBLIC INTELLIGENCE" PDF EXPLAINS IN DETAIL WHAT THE ACCOMPANYING VIDEO SEEKS TO INFORM US ABOUT.  THE PDF IS A GOVERNMENT DOCUMENT NOT SUBJECT TO PUBLIC CHANCE.

 

https://info.publicintelligence.net/USArmy-InternmentResettlement.pdf

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zzQ0q5f5l8

May 24th Jade Helm update

This May 24th Jade Helm update from Dave Hodges at thecommonsenseshow.com is absolutely riveting. I am only including excerpts of Dave’s article, the actual email from the Lt General follows.
The Lt. General Speaks Out
On the morning of May 23rd, I was sent an email communication from a man claiming to be a recently retired Lt. General who was forced to retire in an Obama purge of military leadership in which the President has fired 270 command military leaders. He provided me with identifying clues so that I could verify his identity which I subsequently did. As a quality control check, I ran the same information by my two primary military sources. Both sources independently told me that they do indeed know both the identity of this individual and his former role and function in the military.
Lessons Learned
Back in November of 2012, when I broke the news about the attempted soft military coup in regard to the Benghazi story, I hesitated to publish my information for 10 days because I did not have outside collaboration for what I was being told. I almost lost my source as a result of my hesitation. As it turned out in this November 3, 2012 article, I was three months ahead of many outlets because the source was so controversial that many backed away from this topic. However, my information about the soft coup connected with the attempted rescue of Ambassador Stevens has proven to be accurate. I will not make the same mistake did with the Ambassador Stevens story. The Lt. General’s information is important and time sensitive. With his identity validated and confirmed, this is his message about the present national crisis connected to Jade Helm.
Revelations From the Lt. General
In 2012 this Lt. General was part of a Pentagon study which studied how many military personnel would side with the government and how many could be counted upon to fire upon American citizens when ordered to do so. The 2012 Pentagon study reached the following conclusions:
Approximately 60% of active duty Army personal will side with the American people.
Eighty percent of the National Guard will not fire upon American citizens when, as the Lt. General said, “(not if Sir) but when the order is given to openly enslave the American people under Martial Law”.
Somewhere around 90% the Marines will side with the American people.
The Navy as a whole will stay out of the fight choosing to be the last line of defense against foreign intervention should the country fall into civil war. (Editor’s Note: Please refer to my previous reference to the fact that the Navy has engaged in five years of war games in order to keep most of its ships out to sea).
It is widely believed that in excess of 75% of the Air Force will side withtheestablishment.
Sir,
After reading your recent article “America’s Survival Depends on Stopping Jade Helm” on May 22nd, I felt compelled to write you. I was recently forced into retirement by President Obama along with 270 other flag officers after a distinguished career beginning on my 17th birthday when I enlisted in the Army.
I am not angry about being forced out (at least anymore) because it gave me the time to think about what is about to happen to America and what I could, would and should do.
In 2012 I was part of a Pentagon study which estimated that roughly 60% of active duty Army personal will side with the American people as will 80% of the National Guard when (not if Sir) the order is given to openly enslave the American people under Martial Law. Somewhere around 90% the Marines will side with the American people, the Navy as a whole will stay out of the fight choosing to be the last line of defense against foreign intervention. It is widely believed that in excess of 75% of the Air Force will side with government.
There are many within the active military both officers and senior NCO’s who see what is happening and what is coming. Many more than you can possibly imagine will not follow an unconstitutional order to move against the American people, nor will they allow foreign troops to openly attack American citizens. This would be the start of a fight these foreign forces could not possibly win as we will be fighting for our families, home, country and freedom. The Russian forces currently on American soil have no stomach for a fight with the American people, I know because I speak fluent Russian and I have met them and many of their officers, when push comes to shove they will stand down and go home. I have met President Putin and I found him to be a Nationalist, the man believes in Russia and while he is interested in expanding Russian influence and power it is because of the threat he sees from America, England and NATO not because he has designs on taking over America.
I was part of a major Pentagon study concerning how our military might react to the coming civil war, our forces will break down into three sides, Patriots, Government and those who choose not to take a side but will protect and defend civilians. With modern antiaircraft systems (mobile and man portable) air power will be all but useless. What we will see is a ground war, city by city, street by street. Additionally what is coming will be unlike any civil war in history, it will be very personal, the government will call the Patriots forces terrorists and traitors, they will arrest, intern, torture and murder suspected terrorists families, this will result in bloody reprisals which will start a vicious cycle lasting for years.
I have a son and a friend of the family both of which I am proud to say are excellent and decorated officers, my son commands a wing of Apache helicopters and the family friend commands an armored brigade. We were having dinner a few weeks ago with several current and former officers. As the evening wore on the mood turned somber as this very subject came up, they have all discussed this including what to do. As the evening concluded both of my son and my friend’s son, and to a man, all of the other officers O’s came together with one statement.
“Sir, when you need us we will be there”.
I am personally aware that many such meetings have taken place with similar pledges of support.
I have tried to teach my these young officers and the men under my command two overriding principals:
Never start a fight but always finish it, and when going into battle let your enemy know through your words, deeds and actions that while I migh die today, know that I will not die easily and God willing I will not die alone.
With Regards and Respect
Lt. General ___ (ret)
For a long list of eyewitness testimonials concerning the Russian troops that began being imported into the USA in 2012 visit the revelation12.ca website and look in the menu on the right. I have been collecting these testimonies since 2012. The testimonies are sobering.

The prison system in the United States is a profit-making industry. Private corporations operate over 200 facilities nationwide and are traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

Prison privatization in its current form began in 1984 as a result of the War on Drugs. While crime rates otherwise remained steady dating back to 1925, the number of arrests quickly exploded. While the War on Drugs initially had a small impact on incarceration, it was President Reagan’s Anti-Drug Abuse Act of 1986 that kick started the prison boom.[1]

Photo of Correctional Officer's patch

CCA houses over 80,000 inmates in more than 60 facilities across the US.

From 1970 to 2005, the prison population rose 700 percent, while violent crime remained steady or declined.[2] Between 1990 and 2009, the populations of private prisons shot up 1,600 percent.[3] Today, the US has the highest incarceration rate in the world – 754 inmates per 100k residents as of 2008.[1] This is roughly 600% that of the rest of the civilized world, with England and Wales having 148, and Australia 126 inmates per 100k residents.[1] As of 2010, private corporations house over 99,000 inmates in 260 facilities nationwide.[4]

Corrections Corp. of America and other private contractors became members of the American Legislative Exchange Council, a non-profit 501(c)(3) association that advocates “tough on crime” legislation.[5] In their 2010 report to the Securities and Exchange Commission, Corrections Corp. of America discussed how drug policy reform threatens their business model:

The demand for our facilities and services could be adversely affected by the relaxation of enforcement efforts, leniency in conviction or parole standards and sentencing practices or through the decriminalization of certain activities that are currently proscribed by our criminal laws. For instance, any changes with respect to drugs and controlled substances or illegal immigration could affect the number of persons arrested, convicted, and sentenced, thereby potentially reducing demand for correctional facilities to house them.[6]

To ensure those pieces of legislation aren’t passed, Corrections Corp. of America spent $970,000[7] and GEO Group spent $660,000[8] lobbying Congress in 2010 alone. In Corrections Corp. of America’s Feb 2011 press release, CEO Damon Hininger stated, “…we are pleased our populations have remained strong, in excess of the 80,000 inmate milestone we surpassed late in 2010.”[9] With the 3.2% increase in inmate population over the previous year, Corrections Corp. of America was able to make $511.26M profit, earning their CEO over $3,000,000 in compensation.[9][10]

Private prison proponents claim that private corporations are able to provide the same service more efficiently than the government. However, according to the Department of Justice’s “Emerging Issues on Privatized Prisons” report, private prisons offer at best a 1% cost savings over their government operated counterparts, while at the same time having 49% more assaults on staff and 65% more assaults on other inmates.[11]

Phoning in Profit

Corporations owning correctional facilities is not the only way that prisons and the War on Drugs have been used as a source of income. For instance, even in government-ran facilities, inmates and their families are regularly subject to price gouging by phone carriers.[12][14] While the average cost of a phone call in the United States is 3 cents per minute[15], inmates and their families end up paying between 16 cents and $5.00 per minute.[13] The profits are then split between the carrier and the government body who awarded the contract. In fact, it is not uncommon for the government body to receive a signing bonus from the carrier, like $17M in the case of Los Angeles County.[14] Unlike the public, the Federal Communications Commission has no safeguards against price gouging when it applies to those behind bars.

In the federal prison system, all able-bodied inmates who are not a security risk are forced to work for UNICOR or another prison job.[17] UNICOR, also known as Federal Prison Industries, is a government-created corporation that provides many products and services, including clothing, electronics, furniture, data entry and military hardware.[16][18] UNICOR enjoys a “mandatory source clause” that according to US laws & regulations, forces all federal agencies with the exception of the Department of Defense to purchase products offered by UNICOR instead of the private sector. However, despite the Department of Defense not being required to purchase its products, many defense contractors take advantage of the cheap labor offered by prisons.[18] For example, inmates make as little as 23 cents an hour manufacturing components used in Patriot missiles, which then sell for $5.9 million apiece. Prisoners also made helmets for the military, until 44,000 defective units were recalled due to their inability to stop bullets.[19] Despite its shortcomings, UNICOR generated $854.3M in sales for fiscal year 2008 – of which 4% went to inmate salaries.[16] Much of this money later ends up in the hands of the local government, as the inmates use their salary to pay for phone calls home. In New York, inmates refusing work assignments have been known to be placed in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day until work is resumed.[20] At the same time, it is illegal to import products made using prison labor into the United States.[21]

References

CONTINUE READING…

Before Freddie Gray: A History of Police Violence in Baltimore

Historic Sprawl

Last week, a man named Freddie Gray died of injuries received after his arrest by officers of the Baltimore City Police Department. Gray’s death and the ongoing protests have focused local and national media on the violence of police brutality in Baltimore City. Reading stories on the recent history of deaths in police custody, the history of “rough rides” in Baltimore police (both from the Baltimore Sun) and a look back on a decade of police brutality complaints (“The Obscene Culture of Police Brutality”) have helped broaden my understanding of this issue. But when Gene Ryan, president of the Baltimore Police Union, stated protests that call for the arrest of the officers involved in Freddie Gray’s death “look and sound like a lynch mob” – it is a disturbing reminder that a deeper understanding of American history is essential to reforming an unjust police department. And much of this history is still unwritten.

With all of this in mind, I’ve assembled…

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DEA Agents Accused Of Running N.J. Strip Club Where Prostitution Allegedly Occurred

CBS New York

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Two U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration agents were arrested Wednesday, on charges that they had a side business running a strip club in New Jersey where prostitution allegedly happened.

As WCBS 880’s Irene Cornell reported, a criminal complaint unsealed in U.S. District Court in Manhattan named agents David Polos and Glen Glover as owners of the Twins Plus Go-Go Lounge in South Hackensack.

The club offers scantily clad and sometimes topless dancers — most of them workers from Brazil or Russia in the country illegally — and private rooms for lap dances, the complaint said.

[cbs-audio-player title=”DEA Agents Accused Of Running N.J. Strip Club Where Prostitution Allegedly Occurred” artist=”WCBS” download=”false” image=”https://cbsnewyork.files.wordpress.com/2012/09/150687179.jpg” url=”https://cbsnewyork.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/stripclubcornell.mp3″ station_name=”Marla Diamond reports” station_logo=”https://cbsnewyork.files.wordpress.com/2014/12/880-audiographic.jpg”]

On video recovered during a search of Twins Go-Go Lounge, including from inside the private rooms, “there appear to be multiple instances of sexual contact between dancers and patrons, with money…

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Operation Jade Helm

This "IS" Hell and I can see "YOU" from here!

The following is information concerning the Military Operation “JADE HELM 15”.

extreme


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r9WH4g6wxfg

http://d38zt8ehae1tnt.cloudfront.net/swf/player.swf?v=1166

http://www.disclose.tv/action/viewvideo/200467/operation_jade_helm_15_huge_info__interview_with_militia_professor_doom/

A couple months ago the DHS (Department of Homeland Security) and FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation) stated that the number one threat to the United States is none other than its own citizenry. This isn’t some small group of spun out nuts or even groups of people that the government feels are too religious such as Waco Texas and The Branch Davidians. As far as Islam, they were not even mentioned in the report.  Instead, huge swaths of American culture and people were listed as the most likely threat to our country. These were some of the groups listed; Christians, Home Schoolers, Members of the Tea Party, Constitutionalists, Preppers (people who can food), Militia and the terrorist group they are most concerned about is returning combat veterans of the United States of America.  http://freedomoutpost.com/2015/03/operation-jade-helm-military-trains-martial-law-american-south-west/

The

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PLEASE READ THIS…IT COULD HAPPEN TO YOU!

My name is Karen Ross-Glaser. I am a disabled 43 year-old single mother, who is trying to provide a better life for my family, away from the abuse we suffered in Michigan. We recently relocated to Arizona 3 years ago, due to a domestic violence situation. The children and I all suffer from PTSD, while the younger children have additional health issues. I am working with many agencies including counseling services to help the family heal.

                Recently, I was arrested and mistaken for someone else due to an Identity Theft issue. (http://www.kvoa.com/news/identity-theft-plagues-southern-arizona-residents/). Fifteen of my Civil rights were violated, including my disability act rights. Upon returning home a CPS investigator told myself and witnesses (CarrieAnn Mick and Charlie Warren) that they had taken my children into custody and I needed to sign a form giving CPS temporary three day custody of Elizabeth (16) and David (15). In shock and breaking down, my friend CarrieAnn holding me from collapsing.  I could barely see through my tears and I signed the paper without reading it.

                Later I realized that the form I previously signed was giving custody to CPS and that they are charging me with neglect and failure to protect; due to being incarcerated overnight, and the children being left unattended. Once CPS learned they were in the wrong and that the children did have supervision, even though they are old enough to be on their own. CPS then charged me with Substance abuse of marijuana (I am a legal Medical Marijuana card holder). CPS then ordered my oldest son and wife to not allow me contact with my newborn grandson.

                The children have been in custody since January 28th. Our counseling has been stopped and they haven’t arranged any visits for us. The courts ordered our counseling to continue and weekly visits to be given, yet CPS hasn’t complied. Since the children were placed in foster care they have been missing twice, skipped school a few times, been in a fight which resulted in a suspension from school and CPS has even allowed my son David who has a closed head injury to join a boxing group. Since the children have been gone, my disability has been cut and assessed child support. I am now at risk of losing our home. I am doing everything I can to raise the funds to hire the attorneys needed to handle this case. I have had to take in renters to help cover expenses and stay afloat. Yet, I am still struggling and haven’t been able to retain an attorney. While time is running out!

                I am being wrongfully accused and have the documentation to prove my innocents. I am fighting for my family, to clear my name, get my children back and save our home. I am desperate and pleading for any and all help that the public can give us!

*PLEASE HELP ME SAVE MY FAMILY*

The problem with this situation trying to find legal help is that it is so widespread and complicated. I’ve been told I need a team of different types of lawyers to handle everything involved;

-Family Law Attorney/Dependency Attorney

-Criminal Lawyer/Identity Theft/MMJ Attorney

-Bankruptcy/Tax

-Personal Injury Attorney

-Civil Rights Attorney

-Civil Attorney

-ADA Attorney

– See more at: http://www.youcaring.com/help-a-neighbor/please-help-to-save-my-family/161606#sthash.L1tvj4hc.dpuf

 

 

 

Holler out to FRIENDS and FAMILY~ EVERYONE;
For ALL of you that didn’t know… I am going on trial in less than 2 weeks. On May 1st, I face the judge on the charges against me. I pray that justice will prevail. I have done everything I could think of within my power, to bring the truth to light. I still don’t have the means to afford the attorneys needed to clear my name and bring my kids home.
I am letting you all know because I refuse to let this be. I am INNOCENT!
I may be gone soon and these post, over the next week may be my only voice left. PLEASE let my story be known.
*Take a moment to check this out; if you can… Everything helps
ATTORNEY’s ARE NEEDED!
Click on the Help and donation sites for case information and updates that includes photo evidence.
http://fnd.us/c/ejlN4/sh/5eoIf
NBC kvoa link to story of my Identity theft and the Severity of it.
http://www.kvoa.com/news/identity-theft-plagues-southern-arizona-residents/
This is NOT A SCAM! I am desperate…
PLEASE Help save my children & clear name.
http://www.youcaring.com/help-a-neighbor/please-help-to-save-my-family/161606
Thanks and Love, Karen Ross-Glaser Photography
http://www.gofundme.com/7zvo4o

PLEASE Help Karen save her children & clear name!

Kids taken CPS custody, Identity stolen & accused of being a substance abuser of Medical marijuana while being a legal card holder in AZ. Anything you can do is greatly appreciated. PLEASE share to everyone you know.Thanks in advance. My name is Karen …

fundrazr.com

Merchants of Meth: How Big Pharma Keeps the Cooks in Business

With big profits on the line, the drug industry is pulling out campaign-style dirty tricks to keep selling the meds that cooks turn into crank.

—By Jonah Engle| July/August 2013 Issue

meth lab cleanup

State troopers clean up a meth lab found on school board property about a block from a London, Kentucky elementary school. Photos by Stacy Kranitz. See more of her photos from Laurel County, Kentucky.

 

The first time she saw her mother passed out on the living room floor, Amanda thought she was dead. There were muddy tracks on the carpet and the room looked like it had been ransacked. Mary wouldn’t wake up. When she finally came to, she insisted nothing was wrong. But as the weeks passed, her 15-year-old daughter’s sense of foreboding grew. Amanda’s parents stopped sleeping and eating. Her once heavy mother turned gaunt and her father, Barry, stopped going to work. She was embarrassed to go into town with him; he was covered in open sores. A musty stink gripped their increasingly chaotic trailer. The driveway filled up with cars as strangers came to the house and partied all night.

Her parents’ repeated assurances failed to assuage Amanda’s mounting worry. She would later tell her mother it felt "like I saw an airplane coming in toward our house in slow motion and it was crashing." Finally, she went sleuthing online. The empty packages of cold medicine, the canisters of Coleman fuel, the smell, her parents’ strange behavior all pointed to one thing. They were meth cooks. Amanda (last name withheld to protect her privacy) told her grandparents, who lived next door. Eventually, they called police.

Within minutes, agents burst into the trailer. They slammed Barry up against the wall, put a gun to his head, and hauled him and Mary off in handcuffs. It would be two and a half years before Amanda and her 10-year-old sister, Chrissie, would see their father again.

The year was 2005, and what happened to Amanda’s family was the result of a revolution in methamphetamine production that was just beginning to make its way into Kentucky. Meth users called it the "shake- and-bake" or "one-pot" method, and its key feature was to greatly simplify the way meth is synthesized from pseudoephedrine, a decongestant found in cold and allergy medicines like Claritin D and Sudafed.

Cops are waging two battles: one against meth cooks, the other against wealthy, politically connected drug manufacturers.

Shake and bake did two things. It took a toxic and volatile process that had once been the province of people with Breaking Bad-style knowledge of chemistry and put it in the bedrooms and kitchens of meth users in rural America. It also produced the most potent methamphetamine anywhere.

If anyone wondered what would happen if heroin or cocaine addicts suddenly discovered how to make their own supply with a handful of cheap ingredients readily available over the counter, methamphetamine’s recent history provides an answer. Since 2007, the number of clandestine meth sites discovered by police has increased 63 percent nationwide. In Kentucky, the number of labs has more than tripled. The Bluegrass State regularly joins its neighbors Missouri, Tennessee, and Indiana as the top four states for annual meth lab discoveries.

As law enforcement agencies scramble to clean up and dispose of toxic labs, prosecute cooks, and find foster homes for their children, they are waging two battles: one against destitute, strung-out addicts, the other against some of the world’s wealthiest and most politically connected drug manufacturers. In the past several years, lawmakers in 25 states have sought to make pseudoephedrine—the one irreplaceable ingredient in a shake-and-bake lab—a prescription drug. In all but two—Oregon and Mississippi—they have failed as the industry, which sells an estimated $605 million worth of pseudoephedrine-based drugs a year, has deployed all-star lobbying teams and campaign-trail tactics such as robocalls and advertising blitzes.

Perhaps nowhere has the battle been harder fought than in Kentucky, where Big Pharma’s trade group has broken lobbying spending records in 2010 and 2012, beating back cops, doctors, teachers, drug experts, and lawmakers from both sides of the aisle. "It frustrates me to see how an industry and corporate dollars affect commonsense legislation," says Jackie Steele, a commonwealth’s attorney whose district in southeastern Kentucky has been overwhelmed by meth labs in recent years.

Map of the US

See more stats on the price of Big Pharma’s pseudophedrine addiction.

Before it migrated east to struggling Midwestern farm towns and the hollers of Appalachia, methamphetamine was a West Coast drug, produced by cooks working for Mexican drug-trafficking organizations and distributed by biker gangs. Oregon was particularly hard hit, with meth labs growing ninefold from 1995 to 2001. Even then, before shake and bake, police had their hands full decontaminating toxic labs that were often set up in private homes. Social workers warned of an epidemic of child abuse and neglect as hundreds of kids were being removed from meth houses.

In despair, the Oregon Narcotics Enforcement Association turned to Rob Bovett. As the lawyer for the drug task force of Lincoln County—a strip of the state’s central coast known for its fishing industry, paper mills, and beaches—he was all too aware of the scourge of meth labs. Having worked for the Oregon Legislature and lobbied on behalf of the State Sheriffs’ Association, he also knew his way around Capitol procedure.

Bovett knew that law enforcement couldn’t arrest its way out of the meth lab problem. They needed to choke off the cooks’ supply lines.

Bovett first approached the Legislature about regulating pseudoephedrine in 2000. "The legislative response was to stick me in a room with a dozen pharmaceutical lobbyists to work it out," he recalls. He suggested putting the drugs behind the counter (without requiring a prescription) to discourage mass buying, but the lobbyists refused. They did eventually agree to a limit on the amount of pseudoephedrine any one person could buy, but the number of meth labs remained high, so in 2003 Bovett tried once again to get pseudoephedrine moved behind the counter. "We got our asses kicked," he admits.

Then, in Oklahoma, state trooper Nikky Joe Green came upon a meth lab in the trunk of a car. The cook overpowered Green and shot him with his own gun. The murder, recorded on the patrol car’s camera, galvanized the state’s Legislature into placing pseudoephedrine behind the counter and limiting sales in 2004.

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The pharmaceutical industry fought the bill, saying it was unlikely to curb meth labs. But Oklahoma saw an immediate drop in the number of labs its officers busted, and Oregon followed suit later that year.

But the meth cooks soon came up with a work-around: They organized groups of people to make the rounds of pharmacies, each buying the maximum amount allowed—a practice known as smurfing. How to stop these sales? Bovett remembered that until 1976, pseudoephedrine had been a prescription drug. He asked lawmakers to return it to that status.

Pharma companies and big retailers "flooded our Capitol building with lobbyists from out of state," he says. On the eve of the House vote, with the count too close to call, four legislators went out and bought 22 boxes of Sudafed and Tylenol Cold. They brought their loot back to the Legislature, where Bovett walked lawmakers through the process of turning the medicine into meth with a handful of household products. Without exceeding the legal sales limit, they had all the ingredients needed to make about 180 hits. The bill passed overwhelmingly.

Industry’s motto has been "stop meth, not meds." One lawmaker likens it to the NRA’s "plea to people who own weapons that they are coming for your guns."

Since the bill became law in 2006, the number of meth labs found in Oregon has fallen 96 percent. Children are no longer being pulled from homes with meth labs, and police officers have been freed up to pursue leads instead of cleaning up labs and chasing smurfers. In 2008, Oregon experienced the largest drop in violent-crime rates in the country. By 2009, property crime rates fell to their lowest in 43 years. That year, overall crime in Oregon reached a 40-year low. The state’s Criminal Justice Commission credited the pseudoephedrine prescription bill, along with declining meth use, as key factors.

For Big Pharma, however, Oregon’s measure was a major defeat—and the industry was not about to let it happen again. "They’ve learned from their mistakes in Oregon, they’ve learned from their mistakes in Mississippi," says Marshall Fisher, who runs the Bureau of Narcotics in Mississippi. "They know if another state falls, and has the results that we’ve had, the chances of national legislation are that much closer. Every year they can fight this off is another year of those profits."

On a sunny winter afternoon, narcotics detective Chris Lyon turns off a country lane outside the town of Monticello in southeastern Kentucky, the part of the state hardest hit by the meth lab boom. In a case that shocked the state in 2009, a 20-month-old boy in a dilapidated trailer nearby drank a cup of Liquid Fire drain cleaner that was being used to make meth. The solution burned Kayden Branham from inside for 54 minutes until he died.

This afternoon, Lyon is following up on a call from a sheriff’s deputy about several meth labs in the woods. His Ford F-150 clambers up a steep muddy slope turned vivid ochre by the night’s rain. In the back are a gas mask, oxygen tanks, safety gloves, and hazmat suits, plus a bucket of white powder called Ampho-Mag that’s used to neutralize toxic meth waste. Cleaning up labs is hazardous work: In the last two years, more than 180 officers have been injured in the process. The witches’ brew that turns pseudoephedrine into meth includes ammonium nitrate (from fertilizer or heat packs), starter fluid, lithium (from batteries), drain cleaner, and camping fuel. It can explode or catch fire, and it produces copious amounts of toxic gases and hazardous waste even when all goes well.

Halfway up Edwards Mountain, Lyon pulls over in a clearing along the forested trail. Scattered over 50 yards are a half-dozen soda bottles, some containing a grayish, granular residue, others sprouting the plastic tubes cooks use to vent gas. Lyon snaps on black safety gloves, pulls a gas mask over his face, and carefully places each bottle in its own plastic bucket. Further up the mountain he finds more outdoor labs and repeats the procedure.

Police cleaning up a meth lab

Cops in Laurel County, Kentucky, work a meth lab—or, as they put it, a "glorified garbage pickup."

Lyon will drive his haul back to the Monticello Police Department, where a trailer is jam-packed with buckets he’s filled in the past few days. "No suspects, no way of making an arrest—it’s pretty much a glorified garbage pickup," he says with an air of dejection. "We have all kinds of information of people selling drugs," but there’s no time for investigations. "About the time that we get started on something, the phone rings and it’s another meth lab to go clean up."

It’s a problem Lieutenant Eddie Hawkins, methamphetamine coordinator for the Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics, was all too familiar with before his state passed its prescription bill in 2010. Since then the number of meth labs found in the state has fallen 74 percent. "We still have a meth problem," Hawkins says, "but it has given us more time to concentrate on the traffickers that are bringing meth into the state instead of working meth labs every night." Now, he says, they go after international criminal networks rather than locking up small-time cooks.

The spread of meth labs has tracked the hollowing out of rural economies. Labs are concentrated in struggling towns where people do hard, physical work for low wages, notes Nick Reding, whose book Methland charts the drug’s rise in the Midwest: "Meth makes people feel good. Even as it helps people work hard, whether that means driving a truck or vacuuming the floor, meth contributes to a feeling that all will be okay." But the highly addictive drug can also wreak havoc on users, ravaging everything from teeth and skin to hearts and lungs. And the mushrooming of shake-and-bake labs has left its own trail of devastation: hospitals swamped with injured meth cooks, wrecked and toxic homes, police departments consumed with cleaning up messes rather than fighting crime.

Meth-related cleanup and law enforcement cost the state of Kentucky about $30 million in 2009, the latest year for which the state police have produced an estimate. That doesn’t include the cost of crimes addicts commit to support their habit, of putting out meth fires, of decontaminating meth homes, of responding to domestic-abuse calls or placing neglected, abused, or injured kids in foster care. Dr. Glen Franklin, who oversees the burn unit at the University of Louisville Hospital, says his unit alone sees 15 to 20 meth lab burn patients each year, up from two or three a decade ago. They are some of his most difficult cases, often involving both thermal and chemical burns to the face and upper body from a bottle that burst into flames. Many, he notes, have also been abusing OxyContin or other prescription opiates, "so it makes their pain control that much more difficult." According to a study coauthored by Franklin in 2005, it costs an average of nearly $230,000 to treat a meth lab victim—three times more than other burn patients—and that cost is most often borne by taxpayers. Meth use as a whole, according to a 2009 RAND Corporation study, costs the nation anywhere between $16 billion and $48 billion each year.

With silver hair, glasses, and a gentle manner, Linda Belcher looks like the retired grade school teacher she is. Though her district, just south of Louisville, has a meth lab problem, she didn’t know much about the issue until Joe Williams, the head of narcotics enforcement at the Kentucky State Police, invited her and a few other lawmakers to state police headquarters. After a dinner of barbecue, coleslaw, and pork and beans, the guests descended to the basement to be briefed about key public safety issues. One was meth labs, whose effects and increasing numbers were depicted in a series of huge charts. One of Williams’ officers laid out the startling facts. Meth labs were up for the second year in a row in Kentucky, and they were spreading eastward across the state. They were turning up in cars, motel rooms, and apartment buildings, putting unsuspecting neighbors at risk. Police had pulled hundreds of children from meth lab locations. Prisons were filling up with cooks, and officers were being tied up in cleanup operations.

Belcher had been aware of methamphetamine, but she’d had no idea how bad things were getting. She set about learning more. "I went to a meeting and there was a young lady there who had been on meth," Belcher recalls. "During the time she was on it, she didn’t care about anything—not her daughter, not her parents. All she wanted was to get money and get meth. That convinced me."

A man and a woman kissing

Theresa Hall kisses her boyfriend goodbye. For being caught with meth paraphernalia and violating house arrest, she faces a year in jail.

Belcher asked Williams and other law enforcement officials what they thought should be done. They told her about what had happened in Oregon. It could work in Kentucky, they said. In February 2010, Belcher filed a bill to require a prescription for pseudoephedrine.

Soon her phone started ringing off the hook. The callers were angry. If her bill passed, they said, they would have to go to the doctor each time they were congested. It wasn’t true—more than 100 cold and allergy drugs made without pseudoephedrine, such as Sudafed PE, would have remained over the counter. And for those who didn’t like those alternatives, doctors could renew prescriptions by phone.

Members of the House Health and Welfare Committee, the key panel Belcher’s bill had to clear, were also getting calls. Tom Burch, the committee’s chairman, says the prescription measure garnered more calls and letters than any he’s dealt with in his nearly 40 years at the Capitol, except for abortion bills. "I had enough constituent input on it to know that the bill was not going to go anywhere."

Yet the legislation had gotten hardly any media coverage. How had Kentuckians become so outraged?

In April of that year, Donnita Crittenden was processing monthly lobbying reports at the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission when a figure stopped her in her tracks. A group called the Consumer Healthcare Products Association reported having spent more than $303,000 in three weeks. No organization had spent nearly that much on lobbying in the entire previous year.

Curious, Crittenden called CHPA. It was, she learned, a Washington-based industry association representing the makers and distributors of over-the-counter medicines and dietary supplements—multinational behemoths like Pfizer and Johnson & Johnson. CHPA had registered to lobby in Kentucky just weeks before, right after Belcher filed her bill. But it had already retained M. Patrick Jennings, a well-connected lobbyist who’d earned his stripes working for Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) and GOP Rep. Ed Whitfield.

The bulk of CHPA’s record spending, though, was not for lobbyists. It was for a tool more commonly used in hard-fought political campaigns: robocalls, thousands of them, with scripts crafted and delivered by out-of-state PR experts to target legislators on the key committees that would decide the bill’s fate.

CHPA’s Kentucky filings don’t show which firm made the robocalls, but the association’s 2010 and 2011 tax returns show more than $1 million worth of payments to Winning Connections, a robocall company that typically represents Democratic politicians and liberal causes such as the Sierra Club’s campaign against the Keystone XL pipeline. On its website, the company boasts of its role in West Virginia, where it helped defeat a pseudoephedrine bill that had "strong backing among special interests groups and many in the State Capitol" via focused calls in key legislative districts. CHPA’s former VP for legal and government affairs, Andrew C. Fish, is quoted as saying that Winning Connections helped "capture the voice of consumers, which made the critical difference in persuading legislators to change course on an important issue to our member companies." Nowhere does Winning Connections’ site mention the intent of the bill or the word "methamphetamine." CHPA spokeswoman Elizabeth Funderburk says the association used the calls, which allowed people to be patched through directly to their legislators, to provide a platform for real consumers to get their voices heard.

Belcher’s bill never came up for a vote. Over the ensuing months, the number of meth labs found in Kentucky would grow by 45 percent, surpassing 1,000.

Belcher had learned a lesson. When she reintroduced the prescription bill in 2011, it had support from a string of groups with serious pull at the Capitol—the teachers’ union, the Kentucky Medical Association, four statewide law enforcement organizations, and Kentucky’s most senior congressman, Hal Rogers. Belcher also had bipartisan leadership support in the Legislature, and the Republican chairman of the judiciary committee, Tom Jensen—whose district included the county with the second-highest number of meth labs—introduced a companion bill in the state Senate.

But the pharmaceutical industry came prepared, too. Its team of lobbyists included some of the best-connected political operatives in Kentucky, from former state GOP chairman John T. McCarthy III to Andrew "Skipper" Martin, the chief of staff to former Democratic Gov. Paul Patton. In addition to a new round of robocalls, CHPA now deployed an ad blitz, spending some $93,000 to blanket the state with 60-second radio spots on at least 178 stations. The bill made it out of committee, but with the outcome doubtful, Jensen never brought it up for a vote on the Senate floor.

Soda cans and an ice pack laying on the ground

Meth cooks often set up shop in the woods.

John Schaaf, the Kentucky Legislative Ethics Commission’s counsel, describes CHPA’s strategy as a game changer. "They have completely turned the traditional approach to lobbying around," he says. "For the most part, businesses and organizations that lobby, if they have important issues going on, they’ll add lobbyists to their list. They’ll employ more people to go out there and talk to legislators. CHPA employs very few lobbyists and they spend 99 percent of their lobbying expenditures on this sort of grassroots outreach on phone banking and advertising. As far as I know, nothing’s ever produced the number of calls or the visibility of this particular effort."

In other words: Rather than relying on political professionals to deliver their message, CHPA got voters to do it—and politicians listened, in Kentucky and beyond. There has been no major federal legislation to address meth labs since 2005, when pseudoephedrine was put behind the counter and sales limits were imposed (see "The Need for Speed," page 37). Lawmakers in 24 states have tried to pass prescription bills since 2009. In 23 of them, they failed.

The single exception was Mississippi, where a prescription measure supported by Republican Gov. Haley Barbour passed in 2010. The head of the state Bureau of Narcotics, Marshall Fisher, says one key to the bill’s passage was making sure it was not referred to the Legislature’s health committee, where members tend to develop close relationships with pharma lobbyists. Fisher has testified about prescription bills before health committees in several other states. "It seems like every time we’ve done that, the deck is stacked against us," he says. "You can’t fight that." Following the bill’s passage, the number of meth labs busted in Mississippi fell more than 70 percent. The state narcotics bureau, which tracks the number of drug-endangered children, reported the number of such cases fell 81 percent in the first year the law was in effect.

Next Page: Everywhere else, industry has prevailed.

Law Enforcement, Narcotics, Anti-corruption: Combating Impunity and Exposing Illicit Wealth: Towards an APEC Network on Prosecuting Bribery and Corruption and Tracking Illicit Financial Flows (Dirty Money)‏

Law Enforcement, Narcotics, Anti-corruption: Combating Impunity and Exposing Illicit Wealth: Towards an APEC Network on Prosecuting Bribery and Corruption and Tracking Illicit Financial Flows (Dirty Money)

01/29/2013 06:07 AM EST

Remarks

David M. Luna
Director for Anticrime Programs, Bureau of International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs

Jakarta, Indonesia

January 26, 2013


Good morning.

It is a pleasure to be here with you as we begin the new APEC year.

The United States applauds the leadership of the Government of the Republic of Indonesia as the APEC Host Economy in 2013 and the Indonesian Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK) as Chair of this year’s APEC Anticorruption and Transparency (ACT) Working Group.

Your Excellency, Bambang Widjowanto, KPK Deputy Chairman, as a previous Chair of this very important and influential sub-forum in APEC, let me congratulate you on your appointment as our new ACT Chair and commend your life-long commitment to promoting human rights, advancing the rule of law, and safeguarding integrity in Indonesia.

The KPK remains a model within APEC on prosecuting high-level corruption cases, including within the police and security agencies, and demonstrating to us all that no official is above the law. The ACT must continue to support the KPK and all of our economies’ anticorruption authorities to eradicate corruption, safeguard integrity and public trust, and restore people’s faith in government as a steward of equality and justice.

I would also like to thank the Government of the Russian Federation for its leadership last year, and applaud all of the economies here for our collective achievements in 2012. I am confident that we will make great gains this year on developing an APEC regional network of anticorruption authorities that further protects our economies against abuses of power and the plunder of our national assets, human capital, and natural resources.

In 2013, we must work together to achieve the three core objectives outlined in our ACT five-year strategy: 1) to minimize impunity and kleptocracy by preventing and prosecuting public corruption; 2) to level the playing field for all businesses by fighting foreign bribery; and 3) to shut down the illegal economy and criminalized markets by combating corruption and illicit trade.

Combating Impunity and Kleptocracy: Enough is Enough!

No economy is immune from corruption, nor can any economy combat it alone. In addition to effective governance within our own jurisdictions, we must take collective action to improve governance across borders and reconfigure the way we fight corruption with smarter, more holistic strategies and approaches. We must work to prevent the flow of illicit funds, including proceeds of corruption.

APEC Leaders recognized the ACT work program in the 2012 Vladivostok Declaration on Fighting Corruption. They emphasized their commitment to investigate and prosecute corruption; to enforce our domestic bribery laws and laws criminalizing the bribery of foreign public officials; to fight money laundering and deny safe haven to assets illicitly acquired by individuals engaged in corruption. They also vowed to combat illicit trade by attacking the financial underpinnings of transnational criminal organizations and illicit networks; stripping criminal entrepreneurs and corrupt officials of their illicit wealth; and severing their access to the global financial system.

The Vladivostok Declaration also renewed and elevated APEC Leaders’ commitment to “enhance public trust by committing to transparent, fair, and accountable governance” to empower communities to monitor government policies and voice their perspectives on the use of resources.

Voice and accountability can not only help check corruption, but also allow our citizens and communities to take hold of their destinies, enjoy higher standards of living, and trust that their governments exist to do good. Transparent and open governments tend to pursue cost-effective policies; minimize misallocation of resources; and attract investment from companies looking for solid investment environments and opportunities. This is why eight APEC member countries (Canada, Chile, Indonesia, Mexico, Peru, Philippines, Russia, and the United States) have joined the Open Government Partnership (OGP), a multi-stakeholder initiative launched in 2011 to promote transparency, enhance accountability, and fight corruption. Indonesia is also a co-chair of the OGP’s Steering Committee this year, and its leadership of both the OGP and the ACT presents an opportunity for us all to further our efforts to enhance public trust and raise standards of living.

Our Leaders have spoken. They have repeatedly affirmed their will to combat corruption across the Asia Pacific region. We must answer them with a transformative good governance agenda that will anchor economic growth and development from Moscow to Jakarta, from Beijing to Lima, from San Francisco to Sydney, and transform people’s lives across all markets in APEC.

ACT colleagues, we must act decisively and collectively to implement the five-year strategy. I am confident that we can fulfill our Leaders’ mandate and achieve APEC’s broader agenda to secure open markets, economic prosperity, and the rule of law.

Fighting All Forms of Bribery

Continued cooperation with the private sector is a critical component of our efforts to level the playing field for businesses across APEC economies.

Our recent work with the APEC Business Advisory Council (ABAC) and other partners has ushered in a new era of cooperation between the public and private sectors. This partnership is enhancing market integrity and forging a more connected, innovative, and dynamic Asia Pacific region that thrives on openness and a rules-based approach to trade and investment.

We can do more. Building on the APEC Santiago Commitment, the APEC Code of Conduct for Business (Business Integrity and Transparency Principles for the Private Sector), and the Complementary Anti-Corruption Principles for the Public and Private Sectors, we can vigorously enforce domestic bribery laws, including laws criminalizing the bribery of foreign public officials, and fulfill our international obligations. I also hope that we can continue to share experiences and best practices in combating foreign bribery, enlist the private sector as a partner in combating bribery, and provide specialized training to make greater inroads on this important front.

We can minimize corruption as a significant market and trade barrier and improve the investment climate in our economies by ensuring that we effectively investigate and prosecute corrupt public officials and those who bribe them, in compliance with our respective domestic laws and international obligations, where appropriate, under the UN Convention against Corruption (UNCAC), the Convention on Combating Bribery of Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions and similar instruments.

The United States looks forward to working with Indonesia, China, and all economies to support stronger bribery enforcement, prosecutions, and other actions in APEC in 2013-2014.

Combating Illicit Trade and Shutting Down the Illegal Economy

Sustainable economic growth also depends on our progress to combat illicit trade and its pernicious impact on the environment and markets.

Illicit trade and the illegal economy undermine social stability and the welfare of our communities. Illicit enterprises not only distort the legal economy, but they also divert revenue from legitimate market drivers such as businesses and governments. Illicit trade further hampers development by preventing the equitable distribution of public goods. But this goes beyond just economic harm. The illegal economy also incurs a significant negative social cost, and in some cases, devastates vital ecosystems and habitats.

The dumping of toxic waste contaminates our food and water supplies. Illegal logging and deforestation or poaching exacerbate climate change and undermine our ability in APEC to advance inclusive, green, sustainable development. Poaching and trafficking of endangered wildlife robs economies of their natural assets and their future.

The corruption that allows counterfeit or ineffective pharmaceuticals to enter our communities endangers public health, denying the sick effective treatment and permitting deadly diseases to mutate and become untreatable.

The corruption that allows traffickers to move people across borders and exploit them with impunity not only violates individuals’ basic rights and freedoms but also stunts both their and their communities’ economic potential and political development.

Kleptocracy and the embezzlement of national revenue and assets that are intended to finance the future for our citizens impair the ability of communities to make the investments necessary to stimulate growth. Revenue that could be used to build roads to facilitate commerce, hospitals to save lives, homes to raise and protect families, or schools to educate future leaders and entrepreneurs is instead siphoned away for private gain.

APEC has a number of tools in its toolkit to combat corruption and illicit trade, and we have an ongoing opportunity to work together to comprehensively and holistically combat corruption, as well as illicit finance more broadly; to foster integrity in global markets and supply chains; and to protect and promote economic growth and shared prosperity.

Among them is the ACT Multi-Year Project that Thailand and Chile are co-leading on ways to combat money laundering, recover the fruits of corrupt and criminal activity, and track illicit financial flows. As kleptocrats and criminal entrepreneurs continue to hide the proceeds of their crimes in legal structures such as offshore shell companies and foundations and then launder most of that through casinos, financial institutions, or real estate into the global financial system, we must bring them to justice and, where possible, return their illicit wealth back to impacted communities.

To do this effectively, we must also target more aggressively the financial facilitators and service providers who commit crimes in helping corrupt officials, criminals, and illicit networks inject their dirty money into our financial system.

The APEC-ASEAN Pathfinder Workshop on Combating Corruption and Illicit Trade that will be held in Siem Reap, Cambodia, in June 2013, will advance a dialogue among partners across the Asia Pacific region and strengthen cooperation by creating a network of anticorruption authorities, promoting information and intelligence exchanges, and facilitating cooperation and information sharing in investigations related to corruption and illicit trade and efforts to shut down the illegal economy.

More broadly, we can and should support the effective implementation of global anti-money laundering standards promulgated by the Financial Action Task Force. Among these are preventive measures that facilitate financial transparency and help prevent the flow of proceeds of corruption.

Converting Political Will into Action: Regional Networks and Partnerships

We can build on our APEC anti-corruption and transparency commitments and the collaborative relationships around this table to create a regional network of anti-corruption bodies that would facilitate the sharing of intelligence and information, as well as the sharing of best practices and challenges in effectively tracking cross-border corruption, other crime, and illicit financial flows.

The United States is more committed than ever to combating corruption and illicit trade, and we look forward to the discussion here in Jakarta.

Together, we will create a better, more prosperous future by uniting our efforts to combat corruption and support accountability and good governance. We must turn our shared interests into collective action by developing more comprehensive approaches to combating corruption so that we can prosecute corrupt public officials and those who bribe them.

Again, I wish Indonesia a great and successful year in APEC 2013 and applaud my ACT colleagues for developing and pressing forward on a vibrant course of action to fight corruption and promote integrity—a course that I know will lead us towards economic growth and a stronger foundation to build the new markets and investment frontiers of tomorrow.

Thank you.

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