The location of Kansas City has led to it being one of the primary shipment hubs in the Midwest, with drugs destined for other parts of the Midwest, West Coast, and East Coast moving out of the city. Kansas City is in the center of the US, and three of the country’s busiest highways intersect in the city. The wholesale trafficking of large quantities of drugs through Kansas City has led the DEA to make some spectacular busts here in recent years.
What it Takes to Become a DEA Agent in Kansas City
Applicants to the DEA have many different career and education backgrounds. Some are law enforcement officials who are involved in conducting drug investigations. Others have degrees such as a Master’s, LL.B., J.D., or a Bachelor’s degree with a GPA of 2.95. The latter requirement is waived for people with three years of experience in the military, engineering, accounting, information technology, ship captaining or aircraft piloting, or being fluent in any one of a number of languages.
Kansas City residents who want to learn how to become a DEA agent should contact the St. Louis Division of the agency to see if jobs are available in the city. Additional requirements include being in excellent mental and physical health, along with having good hearing and vision.
Recruits pursue their formal training at both the DEA and FBI Academies in Quantico, Virginia. Academic coursework takes place at the DEA Academy, while the FBI Academy is used for more practical training. This includes learning to become proficient with firearms, driving, and getting in excellent physical condition.
Drug Interdictions by DEA Agents in Kansas City
- As part of an investigation conducted by the DEA, other federal agencies, and the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department, 13 residents of Kansas City were part of a March 2013 federal indictment for a conspiracy to distribute cocaine, crack cocaine, and PCP.
- The DEA’s on-going massive multi-continent investigation known as “Project Below the Beltway” led to charges being filed in December 2012 against three Kansas City residents for their role in a nationwide methamphetamine trafficking conspiracy.
- A major international drug trafficker who arranged for hundreds of kilograms of cocaine to be smuggled into Kansas City was sentenced to 30 years in federal prison in June 2012. The Columbian national was a low-profile resident of Kansas City until his role in this multi-million dollar conspiracy was discovered.
Addressing the Drug Problem in Kansas City
The large amount of drug trafficking in the Kansas City metropolitan area led the federal government to include Jackson, Clay, and Platte Counties as part of its Midwest HIDTA (High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area) that was created in the late 1990s. This designation streamlines operations between agencies of the federal, state, and local levels.
Methamphetamine – Mexican drug traffickers transport large quantities of meth to and through the Kansas City area. Midlevel dealers supply ice meth to suburban areas of the city.
Marijuana – Large quantities of pot are transported into Kansas City and then distributed to other parts of the country. The abuse of pot is a significant problem in Kansas City, as it is the drug of choice for youth in the state.
Cocaine – Traffickers bring large quantities of cocaine from Mexico into Kansas City. Much of it is distributed throughout the Midwest and other regions, while a significant amount remains in Kansas City. Midlevel dealers in Kansas City sell crack, particularly in the northeastern part of the city.