When you think of drug smuggling you normally think of drugs coming from another country into the United States but in this case the drugs were going from the United States to Mexico. Fifteen people, including a Los Angeles area doctor, have been charged with the conspiracy to smuggle prescription drugs. This operation sent opiates to Tijuana in exchange for cash which was brought back so American addicts could buy the same pills over the counter in Mexico.
What the authorities are speculating about this unusual form of drug smuggling is that it was a lot easier for the drug smugglers to unload a large batch of opiates at the loosely regulated pharmacies in Mexico than to sell them in small amounts to street dealers in the United States.
The drug smuggler can buy a pill in the United States for two dollars, sell it to a pharmacy in Mexico for almost four dollars, and the addict who goes to Mexico to get the drugs will pay about six dollars so it is much more profitable to do it this way.
This is the first drug smuggling ring that they have found that was smuggling drugs into Mexico. The seventy one year old doctor who was arrested was a general practitioner who ran a solo practice and wrote prescriptions for approximately nine hundred and twenty thousand hydroncodone pills last year,
The ring leader, who was not the doctor, was sixty seven years old and made one thousand dollars a day driving different rental cars to Los Angeles to get the pills to the couriers. The couriers then strapped the pills to their bodies or hid them in the engine compartments of their car.