New Jersey is geographically located between Philadelphia and New York, which are both major drug abusing and distributing areas. This is why New Jersey has been nicknamed the gateway state. Not only is New Jersey a major drug trafficking spot for the U.S. market, but globally the state is an ideal portal for moving illegal drugs. Major international shipping centers and airports in New Jersey make the state a major hub for drug smuggling and money laundering. Dominican and Colombian crime families transport heroin and cocaine into the U.S. through New Jersey. Recently, Mexican drug cartels have begun moving heroin from the West coast to New Jersey to be distributed to New York and other parts of the nation. Street gangs and organized crime families residing in New Jersey contribute to the drug abuse epidemic throughout the state. Gangs are responsible for distributing their products to the streets of New Jersey and are usually associated with violence and crime. Like most states, New Jersey drug convictions are severe.
Cocaine and crack addiction continues to be a major drug threat for the state of New Jersey. While powdered cocaine is found throughout the state, crack cocaine can be found in major metropolitan areas. Like most states, crack cocaine is related to criminal activity in New Jersey. Authorities have contributed most violent crimes in New Jersey to selling and using crack cocaine.
Methamphetamine abuse is less of a problem in New Jersey than other drug addictions. Meth can be found in Southern New Jersey around the Atlantic County area. Most meth is brought into New Jersey from New York, where its easier to make the substance.