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Thursday, January 11, 2007 

Gangs and Drugs In Denver

Here is a little information on the thugs running the streets in Denver and what and how they are ruinning Denver.

Cocaine, heroin, and methamphetamine pose the most significant drug threats to Denver. Marijuana also poses a serious threat. Other dangerous drugs such as MDMA and diverted pharmaceuticals also are available and abused.

Most of the cocaine and heroin available in Denver is transported from Mexico or from transshipment points in Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas via private and commercial vehicles. These drugs also are transported into the city by couriers aboard commercial aircraft and buses and via package delivery services. Much of the methamphetamine and marijuana available in Denver is transported directly from Mexico or from source areas in California and southwestern states. Some marijuana available in Denver also is transported from production areas in Canada. Methamphetamine and marijuana also are produced in Colorado. MDMA typically is transported into Denver from domestic distribution centers, primarily New York, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles by couriers aboard commercial aircraft and by package delivery services. Diverted pharmaceuticals generally are obtained through diversion techniques including prescription fraud, prescription forgery, and "doctor shopping."

Drug transporters primarily use Interstates 25, 70, and 76 and U.S. Highways 36 and 85 to transport drugs into and through Denver. Interstates 25 and 70 intersect in Denver and are frequently traveled by Mexican drug trafficking organizations (DTOs). These two interstates provide access to many other U.S. states: I-25 extends from near the U.S.-Mexico border to Montana, and I-70 extends from Utah to Maryland. Interstate 76 in eastern Colorado connects I-70 with I-80 in Nebraska and is used by individuals transporting drugs eastward from Denver. US 85, which connects Denver and Greeley with Cheyenne, Wyoming, and US 36 between Denver and Boulder frequently are used by criminal groups to transport illicit drugs between drug markets. Law enforcement officials in Colorado commonly seize drugs on interstate highways, often as part of Operation Pipeline initiatives.

Mexican DTOs and criminal groups are deeply entrenched in Denver's illicit drug trade. For example, Mexican DTOs and criminal groups control the transportation and wholesale distribution of powdered cocaine in Denver. Mexican criminal groups and local independent dealers are the primary retail distributors of powdered cocaine, and street gangs such as Sureños 13, Gangster Disciples, Bloods, and Crips and local independent dealers distribute crack cocaine at the retail level. Mexican criminal groups control the transportation and wholesale distribution of most methamphetamine in the Denver area; these groups typically sell cocaine in addition to methamphetamine. Mexican criminal groups and Mexican and Caucasian local independent dealers distribute most of the methamphetamine available at the retail level in Denver.

Mexican DTOs control the transportation and wholesale distribution of heroin in Denver and supply heroin to Mexican criminal groups and local independent dealers for retail sale. Hispanic gangs such as Sureños 13 also distribute heroin at the retail level. Mexican DTOs and criminal groups also control the transportation and wholesale distribution of Mexico-produced marijuana in Denver. These DTOs and criminal groups supply Mexico-produced marijuana to Mexican and Caucasian criminal groups, street gangs, and local independent dealers for retail distribution.

Sureños 13

Sureños 13 is an affiliation of Hispanic street gangs influenced by the Mexican Mafia prison gang. Sureños gang members' main source of income is the retail-level distribution of cocaine, heroin, marijuana, and methamphetamine both within the jail and prison systems and in the community at large, as well as through extortion of drug distributors on the streets. Some members have direct links to Mexican DTOs and broker deals for the Mexican Mafia as well as their own gang. Sureños gangs also are involved in various other criminal activities such as assault, carjacking, home invasion, robbery, and homicide.


Caucasian criminal groups dominate the transportation and distribution of Canada-produced marijuana in Denver. Caucasian criminal groups also are the primary transporters and wholesale distributors of MDMA, supplying local independent dealers with the drug for retail distribution. Asian street gangs, particularly Asian Pride and Viet Pride, increasingly distribute MDMA at the wholesale level. Caucasian local independent dealers are the primary distributors of other dangerous drugs including GHB and diverted pharmaceuticals. The Denver Police Department reports that illicit drugs are distributed from more than 100 open-air drug markets within the city's six police districts.

The distribution and abuse of cocaine, both powdered and crack, and associated violence pose the principal drug threat to Denver. Powdered cocaine is abused throughout the greater metropolitan area, and crack cocaine is abused primarily in northeastern Denver and in Aurora, just outside Denver.

Treatment data indicate that cocaine, particularly crack, commonly is abused in Denver. According to ADAD, the number of cocaine-related admissions to publicly funded treatment facilities in Denver increased 7 percent from 501 in 2001 to 538 in 2002. In more than 69 percent of these admissions, smoking (crack cocaine) was the primary method of administration in 2002. DAWN data indicate that cocaine ED mentions in the Denver metropolitan area increased 20 percent from 1,343 in 2001 to 1,613 in 2002; in 2002 there were more ED mentions related to cocaine than any other illicit drug. The rate of cocaine ED mentions per 100,000 population in the Denver metropolitan area in 2002 (82) was higher than the rate nationwide (78). Mortality data from DAWN indicate that there were 126 cocaine-related deaths in the Denver metropolitan area in 2001. In that year cocaine was implicated in more single-drug deaths (41) in the Denver metropolitan area than any other illicit drug. ADAM program data indicate that 34 percent of adult male arrestees in Denver tested positive for cocaine in 2001.

Cocaine is readily available in Denver. According to U.S. Sentencing Commission (USSC) data, in fiscal year (FY) 2001 powdered and crack cocaine-related sentences accounted for 51 percent of the federal drug sentences in Colorado; this percentage was higher than the national percentage (43%). The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Denver Division and the Denver Police Department reported that powdered cocaine in Denver sold for $16,000 to $22,000 per kilogram, $500 to $1,000 per ounce, and $50 to $100 per gram in the fourth quarter of FY2003, while crack cocaine sold for $650 to $1,000 per ounce, $50 to $100 per gram, and $10 to $40 per rock. During the same period, the Denver Police Department reported that the purity of powdered cocaine ranged from 20 to 30 percent for gram quantities and 60 to 86 percent for multiounce, pound, and kilogram quantities. The purity of crack cocaine ranged from 35 to 50 percent.

Cocaine is the drug most often associated with violent crime in Denver. Law enforcement officials in Denver report that the number of gang-related violent crimes such as assault, carjacking, drive-by shooting, and homicide has increased as street gangs who distribute cocaine protect their drug operations and attempt to collect drug debts. Cocaine abusers also are prone to violence, but to a lesser extent than methamphetamine abusers.

Denver serves as a regional transportation hub for wholesale quantities of powdered cocaine. Mexican DTOs and criminal groups from Mexico as well as from California and southwestern states transport most of the cocaine available in Denver in private and commercial vehicles. Powdered cocaine routinely is transported from Denver to markets in Colorado, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wyoming, and other states in private vehicles on interstate, U.S., and state highways. Most of the crack cocaine available in the area is converted locally from powdered cocaine, although some crack cocaine is transported into Denver from Chicago and Los Angeles.

Mexican DTOs and criminal groups are the primary wholesale distributors of powdered cocaine and Mexican criminal groups and local independent dealers dominate the retail distribution of the drug in Denver. Street gangs such as Sureños 13, Gallant Knights Insane, North Side Mafia, Gangster Disciples, Bloods, and Crips and local independent dealers are the principal retail distributors of crack cocaine in Denver. According to the Denver Police Department, crack cocaine is distributed from more than 60 open-air drug markets in all six districts, while powdered cocaine is distributed from 50 open-air drug markets in Districts 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6.


[INFORMATION FROM Publication Date: January 2004
Document ID: 2004-L0570-001 http://www.indianadea.com/public_docs/pubs7/7691/index.htm]

Heroin also poses a significant drug threat to Denver, particularly to the city's suburbs where the availability and abuse of the drug are high. According to ADAD, in Denver there were more admissions to publicly funded treatment facilities for heroin abuse than for abuse of any other illicit drug from 1999 to 2001. However, heroin became the second most abused drug after cocaine when the number of heroin-related admissions in Denver decreased 7 percent from 561 in 2001 to 520 in 2002. ADAD data indicate that 83 percent of all individuals admitted for heroin-related treatment identified injection and 12 percent identified smoking as the primary method of administration during the first half of 2002. DAWN data indicate that heroin ED mentions in the Denver metropolitan area increased 11 percent from 769 in 2001 to 855 in 2002. In addition, the rate of heroin ED mentions per 100,000 population in the Denver metropolitan area (43) was higher than the rate nationwide (36) in 2002. DAWN mortality data indicate that there were 77 heroin/morphine-related deaths in the Denver metropolitan area in 2001. ADAM program data indicate that 5 percent of adult male arrestees in Denver tested positive for abusing opiates in 2001.

Mexican black tar heroin and, to a lesser extent, Mexican brown powdered heroin increasingly are available in Denver. South American heroin and Southeast Asian heroin are available to a very limited extent. According to USSC data, in FY2001 heroin-related sentences accounted for 4 percent of the federal drug sentences in Colorado; this percentage was lower than the national percentage (7%). The DEA Denver Division and the Denver Police Department reported that heroin sold for $1,100 to $1,700 per ounce, $75 to $300 per gram, and $40 per one-quarter gram in the fourth quarter of FY2003.

Heroin generally is not associated with violence in Denver; however, some distributors, particularly street gangs, may commit violent crimes to protect their operations. According to Denver law enforcement officials, street gangs such as Sureños 13 distribute heroin and commit violent crimes such as assault, auto theft, drive-by shooting, and homicide, some of which are related to their heroin distribution activities. In addition, heroin abusers sometimes commit property crimes to acquire funds to purchase the drug.

Denver serves as a regional transportation hub for heroin. Mexican DTOs are the primary transporters of heroin into Denver. Most of the heroin available in Denver is transported into the city in private vehicles or by couriers aboard commercial aircraft, buses, and trains traveling from Mexico and from major domestic distribution centers such as Los Angeles and ports of entry (POEs) including El Paso, Phoenix, and San Diego. Package delivery services also are used to transport heroin into the city. Mexican criminal groups transport the drug from Denver to markets in Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, and other nearby states in private vehicles on interstate, U.S., and state highways.

Largest Heroin Seizures

From November 14 to 17, 2003, DEA and the Denver Police Department recorded the largest heroin seizures in Colorado history. Law enforcement officials seized a total of more than 11 pounds of Mexican black tar and brown powdered heroin and arrested two male Mexican nationals in two separate investigations. According to DEA, the defendants sold the drug to the undercover officers in ounce and multiounce quantities with a purity that ranged from 60 to 70 percent. Law enforcement officials reported that undercover officers purchased more than 3 pounds of the drug from the defendants during the course of the investigations.

Source: Drug Enforcement Administration.


Mexican DTOs are the primary wholesale distributors of Mexican black tar and Mexican brown powdered heroin in Denver. Mexican criminal groups and local independent dealers are the primary retail distributors of Mexican black tar and brown powdered heroin in the city. Hispanic gangs such as Sureños 13 also distribute heroin at the retail level. Teenagers and young adults frequently drive to Denver from the surrounding suburbs to purchase heroin for their own use and to distribute to friends and associates. According to the Denver Police Department, heroin is distributed from 48 open-air drug markets in Districts 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6.

Methamphetamine poses a threat to Denver. The drug is produced and distributed in Denver and its surrounding suburbs. Methamphetamine is available and abused in the metropolitan area while cocaine remains the stimulant of choice. According to the Rocky Mountain High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA), the number of methamphetamine laboratories seized in Colorado increased more than 47 percent from 314 in 2001 to 464 in 2002. During 2002, 16 methamphetamine laboratories were seized in Denver, and an additional 131 were seized in contiguous Adams, Arapahoe, Douglas, and Jefferson Counties. Most laboratories seized by law enforcement in Colorado use the red phosphorus/ephedrine reduction method to produce methamphetamine. However, the theft of anhydrous ammonia and the seizure of laboratories utilizing the Birch reduction method are increasingly common in Denver's suburbs.

Treatment data also indicate that methamphetamine frequently is abused in Denver, although ADAD reported that the number of methamphetamine-related admissions to publicly funded treatment facilities in Denver decreased 15 percent from 181 in 2001 to 153 in 2002. DAWN data indicate that methamphetamine ED mentions in the Denver metropolitan area remained relatively stable at 98 in 2001 and 99 in 2002. Similarly, the rate of methamphetamine ED mentions per 100,000 population remained unchanged--5 in 2001 and 5 in 2002--and was lower than the nationwide rate in 2002 (7). DAWN mortality data indicate that there were 19 methamphetamine-related deaths in the Denver metropolitan area in 2001. ADAM program data indicate that 3 percent of adult male arrestees in Denver tested positive for methamphetamine in 2001. During the first half of 2002, 31 percent of methamphetamine-related admissions to publicly funded treatment facilities in Denver reported injection as the primary method of administration, while 52 percent reported smoking as the primary method of administration.

Methamphetamine is available in Denver. According to USSC data, in FY2001 methamphetamine-related sentences accounted for 31 percent of the federal drug sentences in Colorado; this percentage was higher than the national percentage (14%). In Denver, methamphetamine sold for $4,000 to $7,500 per pound, $700 to $1,100 per ounce, and $80 to $125 per gram in the fourth quarter of FY2003, according to the DEA Denver Division. During the same period, crystal methamphetamine, commonly called ice or glass, sold for $14,000 to $24,000 per pound and $900 to $1,500 per ounce, according to the Rocky Mountain HIDTA. DEA reported that the purity of tested samples of methamphetamine in FY2003 ranged from 12 to 20 percent.

What is Crystal Methamphetamine?

Crystal methamphetamine is a colorless, odorless form of d-methamphetamine, a powerful and highly addictive synthetic stimulant. Crystal methamphetamine typically resembles small fragments of glass or shiny blue-white "rocks" of various sizes. Like powdered methamphetamine (another form of d-methamphetamine), crystal methamphetamine is abused because of the long-lasting euphoric effects it produces. Crystal methamphetamine, however, typically has a higher purity level and may produce even longer-lasting and more intense physiological effects than the powdered form of the drug. The most common names for crystal methamphetamine are ice and glass.


Law enforcement authorities in Denver state that methamphetamine is a growing threat and report a direct correlation between methamphetamine distribution and violence. Criminal groups and local independent dealers who distribute methamphetamine often engage in violent acts including assault and homicide to protect drug distribution and production activities and to collect drug debts. Methamphetamine abusers are prone to violence and often are paranoid and delusional, frequently arming themselves against perceived threats, particularly from law enforcement officers.

Mexican criminal groups from Mexico as well as from Arizona, California, and Texas transport most of the methamphetamine available in Denver in private and commercial vehicles. El Paso, Phoenix, San Diego, and Yuma are significant POEs for methamphetamine that subsequently is transported to Denver. Denver also serves as a regional transportation hub for wholesale quantities of methamphetamine. Mexican criminal groups and local independent dealers transport much of the drug from Denver to markets in Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, and other nearby states in private vehicles on interstate, U.S., and state highways.

Large Methamphetamine Seizure

On November 25, 2003, the Denver Police Department seized 5 kilograms of suspected Mexico-produced methamphetamine from a motel room and arrested two male Mexican nationals. Five 1-kilogram, cellophane-sealed packages of methamphetamine were discovered inside a portable stereo in their motel room.

Source: Denver Police Department.


Mexican criminal groups are the primary wholesale distributors of methamphetamine in Denver. These groups typically sell cocaine in addition to methamphetamine. Mexican criminal groups and Mexican and Caucasian local independent dealers are the primary distributors of methamphetamine at the retail level in Denver. Since the first half of FY2002, the DEA Denver Division has observed an increase in the number of Caucasian criminal groups distributing methamphetamine supplied by Mexican wholesale distributors. According to the Denver Police Department, methamphetamine is distributed from 13 open-air drug markets in Districts 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6.

Marijuana is widely available and abused in Denver. According to ADAD, the number of marijuana-related admissions to publicly funded treatment facilities in Denver increased 14 percent from 504 in 2001 to 577 in 2002. However, DAWN data indicate that the number of marijuana ED mentions in the Denver metropolitan area decreased 24 percent from 979 in 2001 to 742 in 2002. The rate of marijuana ED mentions per 100,000 population in the Denver metropolitan area in 2002 (38) was lower than the rate nationwide (47). ADAM program data indicate that 40 percent of adult male arrestees in Denver tested positive for marijuana abuse in 2001.

According to USSC data, in FY2001 marijuana-related sentences accounted for 13 percent of the federal drug sentences in Colorado; this was lower than the national percentage (33%). The DEA Denver Division and the Denver Police Department reported that commercial-grade marijuana produced by Mexican criminal groups in Mexico as well as in California and other southwestern states sold for $400 to $1,000 per pound, $50 to $80 per ounce, and $5 per bag in Denver in the fourth quarter of FY2003, while high-grade marijuana, primarily produced in Oregon, Washington, and Canada, sold for $2,000 to $4,500 per pound and $600 per ounce. During the same period, the DEA Denver Division reported that locally produced high-grade marijuana sold for $1,500 to $4,000 per pound and $200 to $500 per ounce.

The distribution of marijuana occasionally is linked to violent crime in Denver. According to Denver law enforcement officials, street gangs that distribute marijuana commit violent crimes such as assault, auto theft, drive-by shooting, and homicide, some of which are related to their marijuana distribution activities.

Mexico-produced marijuana generally is transported into Denver from Mexico as well as from California and southwestern states in private and commercial vehicles. Mexican DTOs and criminal groups control the transportation and wholesale distribution of Mexico-produced marijuana in Denver. El Paso, Phoenix, and San Diego are significant POEs for marijuana that is transported into Denver. Canada-produced marijuana is transported from Canada or transshipment points in Washington in private vehicles and aircraft. Caucasian criminal groups are the primary transporters of Canada-produced marijuana. Denver serves as a regional transportation hub for wholesale quantities of Mexico- and Canada-produced marijuana. Mexico- and Canada-produced marijuana routinely is transported from Denver to markets in Colorado, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, and other nearby states in private vehicles on interstate, U.S., and state highways.

Mexican and Caucasian criminal groups, African American, Asian, and Hispanic street gangs as well as local independent dealers distribute Mexico-produced marijuana at the retail level. Caucasian criminal groups dominate the wholesale and retail distribution of Canada-produced marijuana. Local independent dealers also distribute Canada-produced marijuana at the retail level. Some local independent dealers cultivate limited quantities of cannabis in the Denver metropolitan area, primarily in the western and southern suburbs. These dealers also serve as the primary retail distributors of locally produced marijuana. According to the Denver Police Department, marijuana is distributed from 31 open-air drug markets in Districts 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6.

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  • I'm Devious Mind
  • From Denver, Colorado, United States
  • Good judgemnt comes from experiance. Experiance comes from bad judgement. Karma, its a bitch.
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