Illegal drug use by both adults and juveniles has increased steadily in Delaware. Marijuana is the most widely used and readily available illegal drug, although cocaine and black market prescription drugs are also in play. Delaware doesn’t have an international airport, so the state’s highway system and seaports provide the primary transportation network that cartels use to reach the interior of the state. In Delaware, DEA Special Agent careers are often devoted to counter-measures designed to eliminate the incursion of street drugs into the state through both marine and roadway interdiction efforts.
How to Become a DEA Agent in Delaware
The DEA is a federal agency so the qualifications and hiring process are the same in all states. The requirements are stiff. In order to become a DEA Special Agent, applicants must be U.S. citizens between the ages of 21 and 36, in good health and physical condition, possess a J.D., L.L.B, Bachelor’s or Master’s degree plus one year of experience in law enforcement narcotics investigations OR three or more years substantive work experience related to one of the following:
- Military leadership
- Information systems/telecommunications
- Foreign language fluency
Once candidates have met the requirements for DEA jobs, they must successfully complete a rigorous, in-depth hiring process that includes written, oral, physical fitness, polygraph, drug-screening and psychological tests to demonstrate honesty, integrity and competency in written/oral communication, decision-making, problem-solving and teamwork. Successful candidates spend 18 weeks attending a rigorous training program in Virginia after which they must be willing to be assigned to any of the DEA’s 21 U.S. divisions.
New agents start with an annual salary of about $50,000 but can expect to be earning close to $100,000 within four years. DEA agents are entitled to all federal benefits. Further information and application forms are available online at the DEA websites.
Delaware is part of the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA’s) Pennsylvania division headquartered in Philadelphia.
High Profile DEA Operations in Delaware
In September of 2012, nine men from Delaware and one from Florida were arraigned in a Delaware court for illegal possession/distribution of the prescription drug oxycodone. They were part of a prescription drug ring that had been operating in Delaware and Florida for the past two years. The arrests were the result of a cooperative investigation by DEA agents in both Delaware and Florida.
The case against Delaware criminal William Boney was filled with intrigue. Boney was originally arrested for brokering cocaine in November 2010 by DEA agents who were aided by a confidential informant. Boney was later released to cooperate with the DEA on an ongoing drug investigation. He discovered the informant’s identity and plotted to murder him by hiring a hit man. DEA agents not only unveiled Boney’s plan but arranged for an undercover person to act as the hit man. Boney ruthlessly specified that the informant was to be shot at his residence but if he was not at home the hit man was ordered to kill the informant’s young child instead. Fortunately, the DEA saved the day and Boney was convicted of attempted murder and sentenced to 30 years to life.
Ongoing DEA Struggles in Delaware
DEA agents are constantly monitoring the activities of three Delaware chapters of the Pagans Outlaw Motorcycle Gang that is known to produce/distribute meth and cocaine, as well as being involved in murders, vehicle thefts and black market firearms. Street gangs are another ongoing problem in Delaware where the Crips and the Bloods, two rival gangs from Los Angeles, have set up a narcotics network. The Hispanic gang, Latin Kings, has also become a headache for the DEA.