Anti-Smurfing Laws Set to Deal Meth Makers Major Blow

Northeast Alabama
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GUNTERSVILLE, Ala. (WHNT) —Starting New Year's Day, there will be fewer places for people to purchase ephedrine and pseudoephedrine products.   That slight inconvenience however, is set to help put a stop to making meth.

Alabama's new anti-smurfing law only allows drug stores to sell those products.   You won't have to have a prescription, but you will have to show a valid drivers license.  That does come with one stipulation according to Marshall County District Attorney Steve Marshall.

"If someone has a prior drug conviction, within the last five years, they have to get a prescription in order to buy a sudaphed product, "Marshall said at a news conference Friday.

It's called smurfing because just like the cartoon characters each had specific job, meth makers send people out to gather up all the ingredients needed to make the product.

The purchase of pseudoephedrine will also be tracked in real time via computer.   This will make it impossible for someone to go to one drug store and then go straight to another to buy more product.

It will also now be a crime to engage in the practice of buying meth making materials, where in the past it was just illegal to possess them.

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