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Region’s lawmakers introduce campaign that targets smurfing

December 9th, 2013 7:29 pm by Hank Hayes

Region’s lawmakers introduce campaign that targets smurfing

Virginia Delegate Israel O’Quinn, R-Bristol, speaks during kickoff of the so-called 'anti-smurfing' campaign Monday. Photo by David Grace.

KINGSPORT  —  Local lawmakers kicked off a so-called “anti-smurfing” campaign Monday to help put a stop to the criminal practice of purchasing cold and allergy medicines containing pseudoephedrine to manufacture methamphetamine.

The campaign calls for pharmacies to voluntarily display point-of-purchase signs warning meth precursor buyers of the serious consequences of their actions.

One sign, for instance, points out that “meth makes children orphans.”

 Still, none of the lawmakers at a news conference held outside the pharmacy at the Clinchfield Street Food City suggested the campaign will cure the meth problem.

“This is part of the education piece,” Tennessee state Rep. Tony Shipley, R-Kingsport, said of the campaign. “But we’ve still got to deal with the (meth precursor) availability at some point.”

For an expanded version of this article, please see Tuesday's print edition or our expanded electronic edition.

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