Grassley, Feinstein Praise Senate Passage of Bill to Fight Transnational Drug Trafficking
WASHINGTON – Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa, Chairman of the Judiciary Committee and the Caucus on International Narcotics Control, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein, Co-chairman of the Caucus on International Narcotics Control, today praised Senate passage of their bill to help combat transnational drug trafficking. The Senate passed the bill last night by unanimous consent. The House of Representatives would need to act before the bill would reach the White House.
“Since drug cartels are continually evolving, this legislation ensures that our criminal laws keep pace,” Grassley said. “The bill closes a loophole abused by drug traffickers who intend for drugs to end up in the United States but supply them through an intermediary. The Justice Department needs every legal tool to help crack down on those who ship these substances over the border into our country.”
“International drug traffickers continue to find new ways to circumvent our laws,” Feinstein said. “To reduce the flow of drugs into the United States, the federal government needs the legal authority to aggressively pursue transnational criminal organizations and drug kingpins in their home countries. This bill gives law enforcement the authority they need to go after these criminals.”
Grassley and Feinstein introduced the Transnational Drug Trafficking Act in January. The bill, which passed the Senate unanimously in the 112th and 113th Congresses, would provide the Department of Justice with new tools to prosecute international drug traffickers in foreign countries. In particular, it would help the department build extradition cases on drug kingpins from the Andean region, which includes Colombia and Peru. Kingpins from these countries often use Mexican drug trafficking organizations as intermediaries to ship illegal narcotics to the United States.
The bill also would help the Department of Justice combat the international trafficking of methamphetamine, which is increasingly being trafficked from Mexico into the United States. Grassley is convening a Judiciary Committee field hearing on the meth problem in Iowa on Tuesday.