The city of Austin, Texas is perhaps best known as a college town that hosts the South by Southwest music festival every year, but it is also a city of more than 800,000 residents, which makes Austin the fourth-largest city in the entire state.
Because of the college-aged residents that call Austin home, as well as its location in the center of the state, Austin is also a popular destination for drug selling, smuggling and trafficking in and out of the city. Austin is located along many major highways that go every direction through the state and therefore are major drug corridors to the rest of the country as well.
The largest drug problem in Austin is marijuana, but meth, cocaine and prescription drugs are also amongst the most commonly abused drugs in the city. Most of the drugs are smuggled into Austin via the Mexico border, which is about 225 miles to the South- although drugs are also smuggled in from the Western border of Texas and Mexico because Austin is on the way to Houston and the Dallas- Fort Worth metropolitan areas.
It is the responsibility of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in Austin to curb the incidences of drug smuggling, selling and trafficking in the area and to bust drug distributors before they reach other areas of the state and eventually other parts of the country. The Austin DEA office is operated under the jurisdiction of the Houston division office.
Recent DEA Activity in Austin
DEA jobs in Austin are very demanding, as there is a ton of work to do to stop drug smuggling and selling. The following is a list of some of the most recent and largest drug busts in and around Austin, Texas:
- April 2013: Two separate drug rings were busted in Austin, one of which was operating out of an auto body shop in East Austin and had ties to a very powerful, and violent, drug cartel in Mexico. The busts turned up large amounts of cocaine, millions of dollars in cash and a large amount of methamphetamine. The meth was the most alarming as it used to be produced in the Hill County area of Texas historically, but is now being produced in Mexico and smuggled across the border, which makes it more difficult to eliminate. All in all, 37 people were arrested in both busts.
- March 2012: DEA agents in Austin made the largest heroin bust in city history when it seized more than 6.5 pounds of black tar heroin that was manufactured in Mexico by drug cartels. Along with the heroin was hundreds of thousands of dollars, multiple kilos of cocaine, pounds of marijuana and semi-automatic weapons.
DEA Careers in Austin
When considering how to become a DEA agent in Austin there are a series of steps an applicant must finish before becoming a full-time employee with the administration. The steps include meeting basic requirements and extensive training before getting one of multiple careers with the DEA in Austin, Texas. Part of the requirement is that an applicant must have at least one of the following:
- Must have a bachelor’s degree with at least a 2.95 GPA, or have a LL. B or J.D. Degree
- Must have specialized experience in drugs and narcotics investigations, busts, surveillance, evidence gathering and testifying in court
- Must have a bachelor’s degree and at least 3 years experience in maritime/ pilot operations, accounting/ auditing, mechanical/ technical knowledge, military leadership or ability to speak a foreign language fluently