Hawaii’s location makes it an attractive option for drug smugglers looking to get drugs like heroin, opium and counterfeit pharmaceuticals from Asia to the United States, but it is also a very risky option as most of the product would have to be moved via cargo ships. For this reason, in Hawaii DEA careers are often spent inspecting cargo shipments for illegal drugs. However, the DEA in Hawaii is also very active in cracking down on drug production as is seen in meth labs and marijuana grow operations.
The DEA’s office in Hawaii is located in Honolulu and is responsible for overseeing operations in the U.S. territories of Guam and Saipan. Currently, all DEA operations in Hawaii take place under the jurisdiction of the Los Angeles regional office in California. Because of the smaller DEA footprint in Hawaii, local vice police in Hawaii have been trained to work closely with DEA agents and to assist in tipping the DEA off to any suspicious activity in the state.
Main Priorities of the DEA in Hawaii
At present, the main focus of DEA jobs in Hawaii is to cut down on methamphetamine use, which has become the most commonly abused drug in the state. The report claims that much of the meth in Hawaii is produced by Mexican drug cartels operating out of Mexico, California and Nevada, and that the drugs are being brought into Hawaii via airplanes and through large cargo boat shipments that contain vehicles and other large shipments. Since the island is so isolated from the rest of the country, it has also become a popular place for drug cartels and independent producers to set-up meth labs out of sight from authorities.
Marijuana is the second-most abused drug in the state, and Hawaii is currently considering a bill that would partially legalize the drug. The third-most abused drug in the state is cocaine, but is mostly only available in the Honolulu metropolitan area.
It is the responsibility of special agents in the DEA to investigate the distributors of these drugs (who are usually connected with gangs and cartels from Mexico and California) and to disrupt the distribution process through searches, seizures and arrests.
Qualifications for DEA Jobs in Hawaii
The first thing applicants must consider is how to become a DEA agent in Hawaii by meeting requirements. There following is a list of some of the most basic requirements to become a DEA agent in Hawaii:
- Must be in good physical condition
- Must be at least 21 years of age
- Must be of high moral character
- Must have at least a Bachelor’s Degree with at least a 2.95 grade point average
If the basic requirements are met, then the next thing an applicant must consider is how to become a DEA agent in Hawaii through training. Applicants must go through an extensive recruitment process and then are enrolled in a training academy. After the training academy applicants are then entered into the field training program and are considered a DEA agent.