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Statewide Narcotics Action Plan

Issued January 1988
Revised March 1993

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March 12, 1993


Re: The 1993 Statewide Narcotics Action Plan

It is with a sense of great anticipation that I announce the release of the 1993 Statewide Narcotics Action Plan. This plan is the product of a Working Group representative of the law enforcement community in New Jersey. Using the Statewide Action Plan for Narcotics Enforcement of 1987 as a starting point, the Working Group solicited input from recognized leaders in law enforcement and from professionals associated with Corrections, the Judiciary, Education, Health and other disciplines. The information received was compiled into a source document by the Working Group. Specific areas were highlighted, from which the Directives included in this document were developed. A draft plan was then reviewed by the Working Group before submission to the Director of the Division of Criminal Justice and to me.

Illegal narcotics and narcotics-related crime affect our communities, our workplaces, our government institutions and our schools. It directly impacts each citizen's standard of living and the State's economy. Accordingly, as Attorney General, I have made narcotics enforcement the number one priority for every law enforcement agency in the State. A comprehensive plan, executed by dedicated enforcement personnel at the State, county and local levels is our best hope for success.

The 1993 Statewide Narcotics Action Plan reaffirms the original Action Plan's commitment to mobilize the State's enforcement assets to identify, investigate, prosecute, convict and incarcerate narcotics criminals at all levels of the distribution chain. The 1993 Action Plan goes one step further, by identifying and refining programs and enforcement techniques which have proven successful. The Weed & Seed and Community Policing programs, unheard of in 1987, now form a principle part of our efforts against narcotics traffickers in 1993.

I would like to extend my appreciation to all of those people who participated in the process leading to the release of the 1993 Action Plan. Further, I wish to express my continuing confidence that all of the recipients of this Plan will execute its directives to the best of their abilities. The citizens of New Jersey have the right to expect nothing short of our best efforts in this critical endeavor.

Robert J. Del Tufo
Attorney General


The Statewide Action Plan for Narcotics Enforcement (hereinafter, The Action Plan or The Narcotics Action Plan of 1987) was published in October 1987. The Action Plan complemented the Comprehensive Drug Reform Act passed by the Legislature and signed by the Governor in July 1987. The Drug Reform Act provided for determinant sentences for drug offenses, added new offenses that reflected public policy regarding the drug menace and enhanced penalties for certain repetitive criminal conduct. Common to both the Action Plan and the Drug Reform Act was an emphasis on the conduct of juveniles.

The law also enabled New Jersey to enhance drug prevention efforts through the imposition of the new Drug Enforcement and Demand Reduction (DEDR) penalty. The DEDR penalties are dedicated, by the Drug Reform Act, to fund the Governor's Alliance to Prevent Alcoholism and Drug Abuse--a network of community-based education, prevention and treatment initiatives. The local Alliance network is viewed as the fundamental instrument for community attention and action in preventing drug and alcohol use by community youth.

The Action Plan established 103 directives, 36 guidelines, 8 strategic objectives and 23 tactical objectives for narcotics enforcement operations around the State. Its strategic objectives were:

  • to put every actor along the drug distribution chain at enhanced risk of identification, apprehension, swift prosecution and stern punishment;
  • to target repeat offenders, large scale or prolific distributors, upper echelon members of organized trafficking networks, manufacturers and persons who distribute to, or employ juveniles in, drug distribution schemes for investigation and prosecution;

  • to eliminate open and notorious commercial drug transactions;

  • to discourage all persons, and especially young people, from using or purchasing illicit substances and to discourage the misnomered concept of "casual" and "recreational" drug use;

  • to prevent, or to delay as much as possible, students' exposure to the use of illicit substances;

  • to eliminate all drug presence and distribution activities from established school safety zones and to provide a secure environment conducive to education;

  • to disrupt organized drug trafficking networks by targeting key network members;

  • to reduce the profit margins currently enjoyed by drug trafficking networks by (1) reducing drug demand and (2) increasing perceived and actual "overhead" costs associated with operating the network and avoiding detection and stern punishment.

These objectives were to be met by a strategy which called for the establishment and enhancement of county task forces; for the use of interagency task forces; for enhancing the patrol, investigation, asset forfeiture and prosecution functions; for instituting programs to protect youth, specifically in school "safety zones"; and for increasing training, coordination and grant availability.

All New Jersey law enforcement agencies were provided directives for narcotics enforcement activities. The primary agencies cited in the Action Plan responsible for narcotics enforcement were municipal and county police, the Statewide Narcotics Task Force, the Division of State Police, the Division of Criminal Justice, County Prosecutors, County Sheriffs and the New Jersey Narcotic Enforcement Officers Association. The County Prosecutors were designated to have primary responsibility for implementing all of the directives and guidelines established within their respective counties.

In order to facilitate and manage the Action Plan, an Implementation Plan was developed. The Implementation Plan created nine working groups, each of which monitored and provided policy input regarding the directives and guidelines related to its area of expertise. The directives were to be accomplished over f our phases, each lasting six months. A final report based upon the activities of the working groups and site visits with the County Prosecutors was prepared in 1989. Although the objective of some directives was not obtained, general compliance with the Action Plan was accomplished.

To address a core goal of the Action Plan and the Drug Reform Act, the School Zone Narcotics Enforcement Working Group prepared the Drug-Free School Zone Enforcement Guide. The guide was published under the auspices of the Attorney General and the Commissioner of the Department of Education and included three documents: Attorney General Executive Directive 1988-1 entitled, Law Enforcement Operations On or Near School Property: School District Guidelines for Cooperation with Law Enforcement Authorities; and A Model for an Agreement Between Education and Law Enforcement Officials. These documents provided the policies for interaction and cooperation between law enforcement and school officials. Included were guidelines under which law enforcement personnel could conduct undercover operations in the schools and guidance about police presence at schools or school functions, arrest protocols, joint training, dispute resolution, and the referral of matters by school officials to law enforcement authorities. The Model Agreements were required to be executed between all school districts and the appropriate police agencies.

The Drug-Free School Zone Enforcement Guide and the Model Agreements are the practical guides to school zone enforcement efforts and are reflective of the very successful partnership between law enforcement and educational communities to achieve the goal of protecting New Jersey's youth from drug sales. First published in 1987, the Model Agreement was revised in 1992 to also address violence in schools and, particularly, the presence of guns. At the publication of this document, more than 80 percent of the public school districts in the State had executed the Revised Model Agreement.

The impact of the Action Plan and Drug Reform Act was immediate. Drug arrests rose in the second half of 1987 and throughout 1988 and 1989. Between 1986 and 1989, drug arrests rose, statewide, by 71 percent. In some counties, the number of arrests doubled. All counties reported increases.

Significantly, certain types of drug arrests have remained consistent from 1988 to 1990. School zone arrests rose from 1,375 in 1987, to 6,582 in 1988, and to 9,497 in 1989. In 1990, 8,750 school zone arrests were reported; 1991 indicates a certain leveling off with about 8,400 arrests reported. This reflects a continuing effort to enforce the drug-free school zone policy of the Action Plan.

Supplementing New Jersey's narcotics enforcement plans were the federal Anti-Drug Abuse Acts of 1986 and 1987 which made significant funds available to the various states for Drug Control and System Improvement. The Action Plan served as New Jersey's required submission to the U.S. Department of Justice for a comprehensive drug control strategy as a prerequisite to funding. In New Jersey, these narcotics block grant funds were received, administered and distributed by the Division of Criminal Justice. More than 90 percent of the federal funds received were distributed to county and municipal law enforcement agencies.

The most recent New Jersey submission, the New Jersey Statewide Strategy for the Fiscal Year 1992 Drug Control and System Improvement Formula Grant Program, dated December 1991, adds the following to the comprehensive strategy:

The key component of New Jersey's Statewide Drug Control Strategy is the Multi-Jurisdictional Task Force operation . . . to augment the Task Force Program, a community policing initiative has been added to this year's strategy . . . in addition, funding continues to support court and correctional initiatives . . .

The Narcotics Action Plan of 1987 impacted significantly on other government agencies. In particular, the judiciary and corrections were faced with new demands. The statewide strategy was required to comprehensively address the enforcement-courts- jail-treatment continuum. The Administrative Office of the Courts reported a 40 percent increase in the number of indictments between 1987 and 1989. Programs were initiated to meet the new demands. In 1989, the Chief Justice established drug courts by transferring Superior Court judges from civil to criminal court. Additionally, a program called Expeditious Processing of Narcotics Cases was initiated in seven counties.

The Department of Corrections reported that, between 1987 and 1989, the percentage of those incarcerated for narcotics- related crimes rose from 15 to 24 percent. The group of inmates most likely to engage in recidivistic conduct, those in need of drug abuse treatment, constituted over 60 percent of the inmate population. To meet this problem, the New Jersey Department of Corrections adopted a Comprehensive Substance Abuse Treatment Plan in 1989. Also, alternatives to traditional incarceration have been explored; the Juvenile Campus Program has been implemented and the Juvenile Boot Camp is being developed.

The Juvenile Campus Program is one among a broad spectrum of programs supported by federal narcotics block grant funds. Law enforcement, the judiciary, corrections and community-based initiatives all benefit from the funding. Among the programs funded are those listed below.

Juvenile Campus Program

The Juvenile Campus Program is a residential, seven-day-a- week, 24-hour-a-day, service program for juveniles who have been adjudicated as offenders with ongoing substance abuse problems. The program provides four to eight months of treatment. The residents spend half of the day working and half in an academic or vocational school, five days per week. Intensive counseling is an integral element of the program.

Comprehensive Correctional Drug Treatment Program

This program provides comprehensive substance abuse treatment to drug-addicted offenders at five juvenile correctional facilities. Treatment is based on the TRAP model and includes three phases: Orientation, Treatment and Re-Entry. The treatment usually lasts approximately one year.

Intensive Parole Drug Program

This program provides an opportunity for the State Parole Board to release inmates who have a history of drug involvement at their first eligibility date. The supervision includes an assessment, within five days after release, to determine the need for treatment and to establish a supervision plan and monitoring level. Thirteen parole officers carrying a maximum caseload of 25, are assigned to the program. One salutary effect is the reduction of the prison population while maintaining intense inmate management at 20 percent of the cost of incarceration.

Narcotics Intervention Program (NIP)

The Narcotics Intervention Program is a supervisory program that combines the efforts of probation officers and community volunteers in Middlesex County. Inmates are drug tested prior to release at either a parole hearing or bail hearing. Upon release, if the inmate is admitted into the NIP Program, a NIP officer is assigned to that inmate. NIP volunteers assist the parole officer by monitoring the defendant's participation in the program. An example of a volunteer's duty would be contacting an employer on a daily basis to ensure regularly scheduled employment hours are being kept by the former inmate.

Seth Boyden Model Drug-Free Housing Project

New Jersey has instituted a model drug-free/community revitalization program for public housing residents at Newark's Seth Boyden Housing Project. This initiative is a comprehensive approach involving enhanced police presence, education, treatment and community/tenant participation. Many departments in state government--Law and Public Safety, Education, Health, Community Affairs and Corrections--are working together with the Tenants' Association, the Newark Housing Authority and the federal Housing and Urban Development Authority to improve the quality of life for residents at the complex.

Operation Green Giant

Operation Green Giant is a Division of Criminal Justice program designed to encourage the use of asset forfeiture as an added strategy in narcotics investigations. The program supports the work of specialized accountant investigators and analysts who work on cases with the potential for significant asset seizure. The investigators and analysts are used to identify assets, primarily through financial analysis, which might otherwise go undiscovered. These investigations are cooperative efforts between Criminal Justice and the Division of State Police. The program's resources are available to municipal and county law enforcement agencies for case assistance or for training.

Weed and Seed

Trenton, New Jersey, was selected as a pilot site for the United States Department of Justice's Weed and Seed Program. This program combines law enforcement efforts and social and rehabilitative resources in a mutually supportive and dependent methodology. The program "weeds out" crime from targeted neighborhoods through the use of concentrated law enforcement efforts aimed at removing and incapacitating violent criminals and drug traffickers. At the same time, it "seeds" the targeted sites with a wide range of crime and drug prevention programs and human service agency resources.

Police/Community Partnership Program

New Jersey is expanding the Weed and Seed strategy through the Police/Community Partnership Program. Anti-drug abuse block Grant funds are being used to implement this program in urban centers throughout the State. The program is based on the Weed and Seed concept and incorporates the four basic components of Weed and Seed: (1) the Violent Offender Removal Program, (2) the Community-Oriented Policing Program, (3) the establishment of Safe Haven/Community Centers and (4) neighborhood revitalization.

Expeditious Processing of Narcotics Cases

This program addresses the increased volume of drug cases by funding "drug courts" in seven counties (Essex, Hudson, Mercer, Middlesex, Morris, Ocean and Passaic). These grants fund judicial support staff to accommodate the transfer of judges from the civil to criminal courts. The program contains both pre- and post-indictment components.

Narcotics/Court System Improvement Program

The Narcotics/Court System Improvement Program provides funding for judicial support staff in f our counties (Essex, Hudson, Mercer and Middlesex) where one additional judge was transferred from civil to criminal court. Additionally, state court system improvement is directed toward the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC) and Department of the Public Advocate/Office of the Public Defender (OPD). The AOC effort is geared toward Criminal Systems Automation Improvement. Funding provides additional staff and equipment to integrate the county correctional system and PROMIS/GAVEL. OPD efforts center on the addition of staff and support costs to enable the office to initiate early screening of drug cases and participation in the development of alternatives to incarceration.

Treatment Assessment Service Center (TASC)

TASC grants are funded in five counties (Atlantic, Gloucester, Essex, Monmouth and Union). TASC is a pre- disposition drug use detection and monitoring program. Counties had previously lacked an established system of substance abuse assessment, urine monitoring, referral and placement into treatment centers. Grant funds allow for the hiring of a TASC evaluator and for contracting for urine testing.

Drug-Free Workplace (Department of Law and Public Safety)

This project serves as a model for addressing substance abuse by state employees. The primary activities are training employees regarding policy and guidelines, providing supervisors with training and skills needed to comply with policy and guidelines, monitoring the effectiveness of the employee advisory service, and addressing and resolving grievances associated with the policy.

Drug Diversion Unit

The Drug Diversion Unit conducts proactive and reactive criminal investigations and prosecutions of the diversion of pharmaceutical prescribed and controlled dangerous substances into the illicit market. The Unit supports the regulatory investigative function in the critical review of diversion allegations; provides the coordination of cases, dissemination of information and training for county investigators on the subject of diversion; investigates and prosecutes large-scale diversion schemes; and investigates and prosecutes cases which may have a significant impact on the professional community or on the public.

Computerized Criminal History Upgrades

For fiscal year 1992, the Bureau of Justice Assistance had required that a minimum of 5 percent of the total block grant funds be devoted to improve the quality of automated criminal justice records. The set-aside will be split between the New Jersey Department of Treasury, Office of Telecommunications and Information System (OTIS), and the Administrative Office of the Courts (AOC). OTIS will redesign the New Jersey Computerized Criminal History System to increase the accuracy and completeness of criminal history information. AOC will streamline and interface the PROMIS/GAVEL, County Corrections Information and Automated Complaint systems.

County Narcotics Task Forces

The 21 County Narcotics Task Forces in New Jersey are dedicated to increasing the ability of county and municipal criminal justice agencies in the removal of specifically targeted drug offenders and drug networks. The Task Forces utilize multi jurisdictional operations to combine the intelligence, personnel and enforcement resources of county, local, state and federal law enforcement agencies. The utilization of multi-jurisdictional operations has resulted in amenable relationships developing across law enforcement agencies as well as the targeting and solving of drug cases that cross law enforcement jurisdictions.

Commission to Deter Criminal Activity

The Commission to Deter Criminal Activity was legislatively enacted in 1984 to educate the public about criminal statutes for the purpose of deterring criminal behavior. The Commission, composed of law enforcement officials, elected officials and private citizens, has been instrumental in developing and distributing demand reduction materials statewide. The Commission is also involved in initiatives regarding bias crime and cultural diversity.

Many of these described programs are consistent with the National Drug Control Strategy, published annually by the federal government. The stated goal of the National Strategy is to reduce drug use. The federal block grant and discretionary grants have been employed in New Jersey to meet that goal.

In addition to federally funded programs, other programs using state, county and local resources have been initiated. Beginning in 1987, state law enforcement agencies, with the cooperation of education officials, introduced the Drug Abuse Resistance Education Program into New Jersey schools. Known more commonly as D.A.R.E., the program trains police officers in an established curriculum that those officers then teach in their local schools. D.A.R.E. emphasizes values and positive decision- making processes. In 1988, D.A.R.E. started with the training of six State Police officers. Currently there are more than 900 state, county and municipal officers certified to train the D.A.R.E. curriculum. Since 1990, the State Police has trained close to 500 of those individuals. This is the second largest number of trained officers in any state in the nation.

Since 1986, the Division of Criminal Justice has conducted periodic surveys. Entitled Drug and Alcohol Use Among New Jersey High School Students (hereafter, the High School Survey), the surveys measure the experience and opinions of high school students regarding drugs and alcohol. The surveys may be used as a barometer of the success of various programs undertaken to thwart drug and alcohol use and abuse. The 1990 report, based on survey data collected from 2,000 tenth through twelfth grade students, showed positive trends. The percentage of students who have used an abusable substance other than alcohol in their lives decreased, as did the percentage of students who reported regular use of an abusable substance other than alcohol.

To determine factors that explain trends, the High School Survey also asks the students their opinions about factors preventing substance abuse. The two highest ranking factors cited by students were fear of physical harm and fear of trouble with the law. The awareness elements of the various enforcement and prevention programs should be credited for this trend.

The Statewide Narcotics Action Plan of 1987, sought to mobilize all elements of the law enforcement community to both enforce the Comprehensive Drug Reform Act and to carry that mobilization to the communities, groups and agencies with whom law enforcement interacts. The recognized limits to law enforcement authority required that the State establish a mechanism for comprehensively melding the enforcement, prevention and rehabilitation interests. Thus, in 1989, the Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse was established. Included as members were representatives of the Attorney General; the Judiciary; and the Departments of Health, Corrections, Education and Community Affairs. The Council publishes the Comprehensive Statewide Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Master Plan. An updated Master Plan is to be published annually. Among the Council's responsibilities are the review and coordination of all State departments' efforts regarding drug and alcohol abuse.

The purpose of the Governor's Council is to provide a forum which allows for a comprehensive approach to drug abuse issues. This is based on the recognition that single-pronged approaches do not work. This strategy allows for the cross-fertilization of ideas among the disciplines and results in a holistic, coordinated and effective solution to drug abuse in New Jersey.

The Attorney General's 1993 Statewide Narcotics Action Plan (hereafter, Action Plan II) is built on the experiences and successes of the past five years. From the 1987 Action Plan to the 1992 Comprehensive Master Plan, New Jersey has remained at the national forefront in drug enforcement and deterrence. Further, the resource that law enforcement brings to the ultimate goal of demand reduction has been reinforced by a continuing comprehensive strategy. For that reason, Directive 1.1 from the 1987 Action Plan has been adopted without change in the 1993 Action Plan II.

Directive 1.1: It shall be the responsibility of all sworn law enforcement officers, operating through their appropriate chain of command, to cooperate with public and private organizations within their respective communities for the purpose of developing and implementing education, prevention and public awareness programs designed to reduce the demand for illicit substances.


The dynamics of the implementation of The Narcotics Action Plan of 1987 demonstrated an enthusiastic response from all disciplines within the law enforcement community. The implementation process resulted in the submission of ideas and recommendations for modifications of the directives in the original Action Plan. Correspondingly, experience demonstrated that, despite good efforts, some guidelines and directives could not be accomplished. That experience has been incorporated into Action Plan II.

Those directives which require continuing effort have been adopted into the Action Plan II. Many of the original directives have been successfully accomplished and require no restatement in this document. Accordingly, there are fewer directives in Action Plan II. Nevertheless, Action Plan II's foundation remains firmly rooted in the accomplishments of the Narcotics Action Plan of 1987.

Like the Narcotics Action Plan of 1987, the Action Plan II does not create any never-before-conceived tactic or strategy. The tactics and stratagems set forth in both plans are derived from the experience of patrol officers, detectives, investigators and prosecutors. The objective of both Plans is to harness that experience, identify the priorities, mobilize law enforcement resources and continually assess the effectiveness of law enforcement activities.

Like the Action Plan, the Action Plan II recognizes that law enforcement resources are finite, perhaps more so in 1993 than in 1987. It also recognizes that directives, no matter how many or how substantive, and no matter how completely achieved, are not the totality by which the drug problem will be met and overcome. Law enforcement is a single resource among many. Government agencies that address education, treatment and prevention must muster and organize services. Concepts of community, neighborhood and the family institution are all necessary components to achieve success.

The law enforcement component is looked to for leadership and to hold the line. While the devastation drug abuse can bring to a person and family is very tragically personalized, public safety is still foremost on the minds of citizens. The linkage between illegal drug activities and crimes against people and against property is highlighted every day. Despite the dimensions of the problem, the public expects a best law enforcement effort.

Finally, while crime prevention and detection remain principal objectives of law enforcement, law enforcement plays a significant role in the treatment process. An arrest can be a drug user's opportunity to confront the problem. Drug testing as a condition of a diversionary or probationary program opens the way to rehabilitation. The role of law enforcement is critical to the success of both the supply and demand side of the drug problem.

New Jersey's law enforcement structure is complex. In order to study that structure and define with some particularity the roles of the various agencies, in 1991, the Attorney General convened the Law Enforcement Study Commission. The Commission was composed of representatives of each type of law enforcement agency in the State, and its purpose was to define the core responsibilities of each type of agency. Using the Commission's Study as a reference, and based upon five years of experience under the Action Plan, the tasks of each participating agency under the Action Plan of 1993 can be identified.

Two law enforcement officers' associations provide valuable coordinating and informational roles. The New Jersey Narcotic Enforcement Officers Association (N.J.N.E.O.A.) continues to play a lead role in promoting interagency communication and cooperation among New Jersey law enforcement. The Association publishes a monthly bulletin and conducts training seminars and conferences which reach a significant number of New Jersey sworn officers. The County Task Force Commanders Association plays an important role in the coordination and communication between the county task forces, including providing training for county and municipal narcotics officers.

Directives in this Chapter of the Action Plan II are organized based upon their applicability to the participating agencies.


Directive 2.1: Narcotics enforcement is designated to remain the number one priority for every New Jersey law enforcement agency.

Directive 2.2: All sworn law enforcement officers shall arrest any person who commits a controlled dangerous substance offense, including a disorderly persons offense, unless such action would jeopardize an ongoing law enforcement operation or there is a compelling public safety reason not to arrest.

Directive 2.3: Every law enforcement agency with five or more sworn officers shall designate at least one officer as its narcotics enforcement officer and shall submit the name of the designee to the County Narcotics Task Force and to the Statewide Narcotics Task Force. This officer shall, at a minimum, represent that agency to the County Task Force and shall also assist the task force when possible on major raids and in other enforcement activities. To facilitate training and integration into Task Force methods of operation, the designated officer should be assigned to the County Task Force for a period to be determined by the municipal chief and County Prosecutor.

Directive 2.4: The state, county and local law enforcement agencies should work together to prepare and finalize within 90 days of the release of this document a plan of action to attack the narcotics problem within all communities with a population of 25,000 or more (77 municipalities), incorporating strategies which best suit the jurisdiction. The plan is to be implemented and in force for a period of one year and shall thereafter be evaluated in light of plan objectives. The plan must include directed overall strategies (Task Force participation, drug education, etc. ) and should include strategies that address problems particular to the jurisdiction. These strategies must be developed by municipalities with the concurrence of the County Prosecutor. County strategies must be developed with the approval of the Attorney General. (See Directive 2.26).

Directive 2.5: All law enforcement agencies must comply with the regulations governing the distribution of forfeited property and proceeds.

Directive 2.6: All law enforcement agencies must comply with the Attorney General's guidelines, issued periodically, addressing the acquisition, management and disposition of forfeited property.

Directive 2.7: A Drug Abuse Resistance Education Program shall be introduced by local, county and state law enforcement agencies in every municipality.


The Statewide Narcotics Task Force serves as the Attorney General's coordinating agent in all matters relating to narcotics enforcement. The Statewide Narcotics Task Force is responsible for the investigation and prosecution of major narcotics networks and for specialized narcotics enforcement, including asset investigation, the application of analytical techniques and information gathering and sharing. It is also responsible for developing statewide narcotics policy and initiatives. The Task Force coordinates statewide law enforcement activities in the schools and statewide implementation of this document and attendant strategies. Through agreement with varied federal agencies, the Task Force is responsible for coordinating specialized narcotics enforcement programs across the State. The Task Force receives, distributes and monitors federal block grant and discretionary grant funds. The Task Force also surveys, conducts, arranges and develops training courses in matters related to narcotics enforcement for law enforcement officers. The Task Force monitors Action Plan II.


Directive 2.8: The Attorney General shall continue to maintain a Statewide Narcotics Task Force comprised of Division of State Police and Division of Criminal Justice personnel, with liaison participation from all County Task Forces and selected other entities, including federal enforcement agencies.

Directive 2.9: The Statewide Narcotics Task Force shall work with the County Narcotics Task Forces in the development of specific criteria for selecting targeted drug offenders or offenses which reflect the statewide narcotics crime problem and law enforcement priorities.

Directive 2.10: The Statewide Narcotics Task Force is responsible for overseeing the implementation of law enforcement strategies and reporting to the Attorney General on the progress of those strategies.

Directive 2.11: There shall be an exchange of information among all law enforcement agencies to enhance ongoing investigations and prosecutions. The Statewide Narcotics Task Force shall be responsible for implementing the mechanism to ensure this process which will be put in place within six months of the adoption of this plan.

Directive 2.12: The Statewide Narcotics Task Force shall encourage and assist in the development of information sharing by all County Task Forces through the existing framework and mechanism provided by the Middle Atlantic/Great Lakes Organized Crime Law Enforcement Network (MAGLOCLEN).

Directive 2.13: The Statewide Narcotics Task Force is responsible for developing a plan to collect and analyze data and to produce tactical and strategic analytical products which will be disseminated to authorized law enforcement agencies.

Directive 2.14: The Statewide Narcotics Task Force shall ensure that adequate narcotics training is being provided on a statewide basis. A training assessment of current and needed training will be done within 60 days. The Task Force will survey the County Prosecutors, the New Jersey State Police, the New Jersey Narcotic Enforcement Officers Association, the Task Force Commanders Association and the Division of Criminal Justice, and the Police Training Commission to perform this analysis.

Directive 2.15: A program will be developed within 120 days of the release of this document based on the assessment prepared for Directive 2.14 to ensure the availability of comprehensive narcotics training. This program will rely upon existing resources.

Directive 2.16: The ALERT Unit of the Statewide Narcotics Task Force will assist in all searches of suspected clandestine laboratory sites to ensure compliance with protocols for the safety of investigators and the public.

Directive 2.17: The Statewide Narcotics Task Force shall be notified of all existing and future contracts or formal agreements entered into by the counties or municipalities with federal agencies.

Directive 2.18: An Executive Board, comprised of the Working Group members convened by the Attorney General to assist in preparing the Action Plan II, shall convene quarterly, or as otherwise required by the Attorney General, to review the implementation of Action Plan II. The Statewide Narcotics Task Force shall provide staffing to the Executive Board and shall conduct surveys and site audits.

Directive 2.19: Any failure to comply with any directive contained in Action Plan II will be reported through the Statewide Narcotics Task Force to the Attorney General for his review and action.


The County Prosecutors, as the chief law enforcement officers within their respective jurisdictions, have primary responsibility to ensure that all of the directives of this document are properly enforced and implemented within their counties. All narcotics enforcement conducted by municipal or county law enforcement agencies shall be coordinated with the County Narcotics Task Force. The County Prosecutors have the lead role in regard to narcotics enforcement within their respective counties and all multi-jurisdictional municipal narcotics enforcement is to be coordinated with the County Narcotics Task Forces. The County Prosecutors' Offices also coordinate county-level law enforcement demand reduction programs in the schools. The County Prosecutors are responsible for the vigorous enforcement of the Comprehensive Drug Reform Act of 1987 within their jurisdiction.


Directive 2.20: The County Prosecutors shall coordinate all narcotics enforcement activity within their counties and ensure the implementation of this Action Plan II within their jurisdictions.

Directive 2.21: Within 60 days of the release of this document, all County Prosecutors' Offices shall complete an assessment of current law enforcement personnel within the county devoted to narcotics enforcement and shall forward that assessment to the Statewide Narcotics Task Force which shall report to the Attorney General on same within 30 days thereafter.

Directive 2.22: County Prosecutors shall maintain County Narcotics Task Forces and each police department, as specified in Directive 2.3, shall participate in the task forces. The County Prosecutor is responsible for overseeing the supervision of the County Task Force.

Directive 2.23: The County Prosecutors' Offices shall each maintain a computerized data system which shall include names, identifiers, criminal specialties, associates, arrest records and other relevant criminal data on all those persons known to be, or reasonably suspected of being, involved in narcotics distribution, transport, manufacturing or ancillary, narcotics- related criminal activity. This data shall be made available to assist other law enforcement agencies in their investigations. The data shall be submitted to MAGLOCLEN consistent with procedures developed by MAGLOCLEN working with the Statewide Narcotics Task Force.

Directive 2.24: "Reverse sting" operations (enforcement sales to drug buyers) shall be conducted only on targets suspected to be drug distributors. Prior to initiating this investigative process, contact with other law enforcement agencies possibly operating in the jurisdiction should be undertaken.

Directive 2.25: Each County Prosecutors' Office shall assign an assistant prosecutor to supervise all forfeiture actions within the jurisdiction.

Directive 2.26: The County Narcotics Task Forces shall assign a member as the operational liaison to the Statewide Narcotics Task Force. This member will be responsible for coordinating requests for data and other joint operational activities.

Directive 2.27: Each County Narcotics Task Force shall:

  • develop criteria to identify and prioritize investigative targets operating within the county;
  • determine the most effective and efficient deployment of resources;

  • determine those strategies which are best employed within the county based on demographics, geographics;

  • assign cases for investigation;

  • identify law enforcement resources dedicated to narcotics enforcement within the county;

  • maintain liaisons with the various County Task Forces.

Directive 2.28: Each county narcotics task force should adopt an operational plan incorporating the elements of Directive 2.27 within 90 days of the release of this document.

Directive 2.29: The County Narcotics Task Force shall be advised about and review all municipal narcotics investigation initiatives. Such initiatives are to be consistent with the local and county strategic plans (See Directives 2.4 and 2.27).

Directive 2.30: County Narcotics Task Forces shall analyze data on high drug trafficking areas and transmit that analysis to the Statewide Narcotics Task Force to support the development of statewide analysis of drug trafficking areas.

Directive 2.31: Each County Narcotics Task Force shall identify all airports, public storage facilities and marinas within its jurisdiction and shall provide the information to the Statewide Narcotics Task Force. The information shall be updated as required. Each County Narcotics Task Force shall establish a liaison with each airport, public storage facility and marina and shall provide awareness information to the employees of those facilities regarding drug trafficking indicators.

Directive 2.32: County Narcotics Task Forces shall update municipal police departments concerning current narcotics case law development and issues involving litigation and procedures concerning forfeiture actions.

Directive 2.33: County Narcotics Task Forces shall ensure that school zone enforcement policies are executed.


Municipal Police Departments remain the first line of enforcement of the narcotics laws and are responsible for patrol, surveillance and investigative functions. Municipal police are key to the Drug-Free School Zone Enforcement and are responsible for patrolling the schools and for providing a police presence at extracurricular school activities. They provide law enforcement programs, including D.A.R.E., in the schools. Municipal police are responsible for between 65 and 80 percent of all narcotics arrests in this State. Many of those arrests are for offenses carrying enhanced penalties. Their cooperation with, and support of, the County Narcotics Task Forces is critical to the effectiveness of those organizations.


Directive 2.34: Municipalities shall identify local drug market locations and routinely patrol those areas and roadways. The locations of drug markets and drug transportation corridors shall be reported to the County Narcotics Task Forces to support the task forces' targeting of high drug crime areas.

Directive 2.35: Municipal police departments shall enforce school zone enforcement policies.

Directive 2.36: Municipal police departments shall ensure that school zone maps are redrawn and amended as necessary.

Directive 2.37: The chief municipal law enforcement officer shall carry out the mandates of the Drug-Free School Zone Enforcement Guide and shall revise and execute the A Model for an Agreement Between Education and Law Enforcement Officials.


The Division of Criminal Justice fills a dual role of enforcement and oversight in narcotics law enforcement. By law, all the functions, powers and duties of the Attorney General relating or pertaining to the enforcement and prosecution of the criminal business of the State and of any county of the State are exercised by the Attorney General through the Division of Criminal Justice. The Division maintains a general supervision over the County Prosecutors to obtain effective and uniform enforcement of criminal laws. Through the implementation of the Action Plan II and federal Drug Control and System Improvement Grant, the Division is responsible for developing, implementing and evaluating criminal justice and multi-disciplinary, narcotics- related programs. The Division, in conjunction with the County Prosecutors, implements and monitors policy. The Division, as part of the Statewide Narcotics Task Force, is responsible, in partnership with the Division of State Police, for investigating and prosecuting complex narcotics cases, as well as cases having statewide significance, and for investigating and litigating asset forfeiture matters.


Directive 2.38: The Division of Criminal Justice shall pursue civil forfeiture actions against assets which are the fruits of, or were used to further, illicit drug trafficking activities.

Directive 2.39: The Division of Criminal Justice shall amend the manual on Civil Forfeiture within 90 days and will distribute that manual to all County Prosecutors' Offices.

Directive 2.40: The Division of Criminal Justice shall monitor the implementation of forfeiture laws and ensure their uniform application around the State. The Division shall designate a Deputy Attorney General to answer questions from County Prosecutors' Offices on forfeiture issues.

Directive 2.41: The Division of Criminal Justice shall appoint a Deputy Attorney General to provide advice upon request to the County Prosecutors concerning the Comprehensive Drug Reform Act and to assist the County Prosecutors in the preparation of briefs and the conduct of litigation arising under the Act.

Directive 2.42: In conjunction with the Statewide Narcotics Task Force and the County Prosecutors, the Division of Criminal Justice will undertake an ongoing study of the impact of the Comprehensive Drug Reform Act on charging, case disposition and sentencing practices; state and county prison population projections; and speedy trial goals.

Directive 2.43: The Division of Criminal Justice shall continue to conduct the drug and alcohol survey of high school students.

Directive 2.44: A Grants Administration Unit shall be maintained within the Division of Criminal Justice which shall be responsible for coordinating, monitoring, evaluating and facilitating all law enforcement grant applications. This Grants Administration Unit will maintain liaison with federal grantor agencies and will notify county and local agencies of the availability of federal and state law enforcement grants.

Directive 2.45: The Division of Criminal Justice, in conjunction with the County Prosecutors' Offices, shall develop guidelines governing prosecutorial charging discretion and guidelines for the imposition of mandatory sentences.


The Division of State Police is responsible for narcotics enforcement in more than 70 jurisdictions not served by municipal police departments. In those jurisdictions, they serve as the "local" police agency. The State Police patrols the highways and are charged to interdict the flow of narcotics into, through and throughout the State. Through its participation in the Statewide Narcotics Task Force, the Division of State Police, in partnership with the Division of Criminal Justice, detects investigates and arrests drug offenders, and are particularly responsible for targeting conspiratorial groups and significant drug traffickers operating within the State. The Division provides training, information, intelligence and resources to other law enforcement agencies.


Directive 2.46: The Division of State Police shall conduct a drug interdiction program with an emphasis toward targeting large scale movement of narcotics.

Directive 2.47: Directives 2.34 through 2.37 shall be carried out in those municipalities in which the State Police serves as the local enforcement agency.

Directive 2.48: The Division of State Police will continue training for, and coordination of, the Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) Program throughout the State of New Jersey and provide the D.A.R.E. Program in those schools for which local officers are not available.

Directive 2.49: The Division of State Police, through the Statewide Narcotics Task Force, shall provide assistance to County Narcotics Task Forces, including intelligence data to assist those agencies in planning strategies.

Directive 2.50: The Division of State Police, through its forensic laboratories, shall assist in the analysis of evidence seized during arrests for narcotics violations and shall annually report trends indicated by analysis and collation of test data.

Directive 2.51: The Division of State Police shall monitor the implementation of the D.A.R.E. Program statewide and shall provide an annual report about the program to the Attorney General.


The County Sheriffs in each county have responsibility for security at the courthouses and other county facilities. In many counties, the Sheriffs are responsible for county jail operations. In addition to having county-wide identification and recordkeeping responsibilities f or criminal offenders, the Sheriffs have provided resources for narcotics enforcement, including officers and specialized service units.


Directive 2.52: In those counties in which the County Sheriff has directed personnel to participate in narcotics enforcement, those resources shall assist the County Narcotics Task Force and coordinate activities with it.

Directive 2.53: The County Sheriff shall assist in arresting, fingerprinting and processing accused drug offenders and shall notify the County Prosecutor and members of the Prosecutor's staff about outstanding warrants.

Directive 2.54: The County Sheriff periodically, but at least two times per year, shall undertake and coordinate a county- wide sweep, based upon reliable information, to arrest drug offenders on outstanding bench warrants.

Directive 2.55: The County Sheriff shall provide the County Narcotics Task Force and municipal police departments with available specialized services, including canine units and special weapons and tactical team services when needed.


New Jersey has been a fertile ground for the development of innovative initiatives during the past five years. Many of these have been developed through the award of discretionary grants from the United States Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance, or through the sub-grant development process of the Drug Control and System Improvement Formula Grant Program. Others have been developed without the benefit of additional funding, representing innovative problem response by law enforcement officers.

This chapter focuses on law enforcement cooperative programs generated by the State, counties and municipalities. Some of these program examples should be considered in drafting the required local and county strategies.


Statewide Initiative on Non-Traditional Organized Crime Groups

In 1990, the Statewide Narcotics Task Force began to emphasize investigation of narcotics activity conducted by so- called "non-traditional" organized criminal groups, i.e., Colombians, Jamaicans, Asians. At that time, the Division of State Police began to focus on identification and investigation of entire narcotics networks.

In order to better accomplish this task, the Division consolidated its Organized Crime Bureau and Narcotics Bureau to create the Criminal Enterprise and Racketeering Bureau (C.E.R.B.) . This institutional change was made in recognition of the fact that large-scale narcotics trafficking is conducted by organized criminal enterprises best attacked through application of New Jersey's racketeering statutes. The creation of C.E.R.B. in 1991 effectively increased the manpower of the Statewide Narcotics Task Force by more than 40 additional detectives.

Active Laboratory Emergency Response Team (ALERT)

The Active Laboratory Emergency Response Team (ALERT) Program is a cooperative program with the Drug Enforcement Administration, the New Jersey State Police, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and Energy, county and local law enforcement, and law enforcement in contiguous states. It was funded by the United States Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Assistance, and by the State of New Jersey.

ALERT began in 1988 and had the initial goals of providing safety training and equipment for enforcement officers in the Attorney General's Statewide Narcotics Task Force and in County Narcotics Task Forces who were responsible for the interdiction of clandestine drug laboratories. These laboratories often contain toxic chemicals and must be carefully dismantled in accordance with federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements. Once the safety training was provided and proper clothing and equipment were issued, the Division of State Police ALERT Unit, including trained entry personnel, narcotics specialists and forensic chemists, was prepared to respond to all requests for laboratory interdiction in the State.

For the safety of all concerned, a protocol was established that no laboratories in the State should be seized without the guidance of the ALERT specialists. A key to this process is the active participation of the Department of Environmental Protection and Energy. That Department is responsible for assessing the hazard and gross cleanup of laboratory sites.

In the second phase of ALERT, which began in 1991, the group became a proactive investigative force to identify and target clandestine laboratory operations. In this phase, a Regional Laboratory Enforcement Group was established, made up of representatives from New Jersey, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania and New York. The purpose of this regional group was to share information, techniques and investigative resources among these contiguous states since many persons involved in clandestine laboratories are known to operate across state lines. ALERT, then, is both a multi-disciplinary (enforcement and environmental protection) and a cooperative effort.


ALERT Contact:
Detective Sergeant Joseph Zeno
Criminal Enterprise and Racketeering Bureau
Division of State Police
(609) 530-3415

Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program

The Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Program is funded by the Drug Enforcement Administration and run by the Division of State Police. The State Police is designated as the lead agency in New Jersey to coordinate investigations with county and local police in order to oversee all marijuana eradication efforts here. The program also includes conducting investigations into the indoor cultivation of marijuana, a program known as "Green Merchant."

During the first quarter of 1992, more seizures occurred than in the entire calendar 1991.

Domestic Cannabis Eradication/Suppression Contact:
Detective John Silver
Criminal Enterprise and Racketeering Bureau
Division of State Police
(609) 530-3415

National Guard

The New Jersey National Guard (New Jersey Department of Military and Veterans Affairs) has entered into a cooperative agreement with the New Jersey Department of Law and Public Safety to provide technical equipment and assistance on narcotics cases under certain conditions. The assistance is available to all law enforcement agencies in the State. Requests must be submitted through the Assistant Attorney General in charge of the Statewide Narcotics Task Force.

Under the terms of the Memorandum of Understanding, National Guard support may include loaning equipment, transportation of law enforcement personnel, training and advising civilian law enforcement officials in the operation and maintenance of military equipment, and the transporting of equipment or confiscated contraband. The Memorandum of Understanding has been in effect since 1989.

Department of Law and Public Safety Contact:
Supervising Deputy Attorney General Donald Campolo
Statewide Narcotics Task Force
(609) 530-3401

Operation Green Giant

Operation Green Giant is a program designed by the Division of Criminal Justice to encourage the use of asset forfeiture in narcotics investigation. Trained financial investigators and analysts participate in cases with the potential for seizure of significant assets. The asset investigators and analysts are used to detect assets which are unlawfully possessed and acquired and which can then be seized and forfeited. These cases represent cooperative efforts between Criminal Justice and the Division of State Police, and between the Statewide Narcotics Task Force and County Narcotics Task Forces.

Green Giant also provides asset investigative and analytical support to various urban initiatives, including Weed and Seed in Trenton and the GANG/IMPACT Task Force in Camden.

Green Giant Contact:
Supervising State Investigator Walter Braxton
Statewide Narcotics Task Force
Asset Investigations Unit
(609) 530-3400

Transportation Network Interdiction

In early 1990, the New Jersey State Police adjusted its interdiction strategy to target large shipments of cocaine transported in tractor-trailers from the western United States.

Information indicated that cocaine was being shipped into the United States through Mexico by truck, then warehoused, and then split into smaller loads, transported and warehoused or sold around the country. The trucking companies used have been found to have ties to narcotics trafficking cartels. More detailed intelligence gathering and analysis led to the uncovering of particular companies, driver profiles, and common routes used, staging areas, vehicle profiles, and common smuggling areas in the trailers. The United States Drug Enforcement Administration and the Federal Bureau of Investigation worked with the State Police on the interstate aspects of a nationwide investigation.

Transportation Network Interdiction Contact:
Detective Sergeant First Class Bruce Bidwell
Criminal Enterprise and Racketeering Bureau
Division of State Police
(609) 530-3415

Operation Reduction Of Alcohol And Drugs Statewide Through Interdiction, Detection and Education (ROADSIDE)

The Division of State Police is funded by the Highway Safety Administration to support a truck interdiction and public awareness campaign in New Jersey.

In ROADSIDE, teams of State Police personnel are deployed to geographic locations such as weigh stations, highways and motels, or parking lots frequented by truckers. Inspections are conducted based upon evidence of violations. These inspections increase the chance of interdicting narcotics and have become an avenue by which additional informants can be developed.

Educational packages have also been developed for distribution. These make people aware of some of the indicators of interstate smuggling and encourage them to contact the State Police if they suspect illegal activity.

Operation ROADSIDE Contact:
Sergeant David Cope
New Jersey State Police Field Operations
(609) 882-2000

High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area (HIDTA)

HIDTA is the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area Program developed by the federal Office of National Drug Control Policy. It provides funds to five areas in the country which include the New York Metropolitan Area. New Jersey recipients of current HIDTA funds are the Bergen, Essex, Hudson and Union County Narcotics Task Forces, and the Division of State Police.

These funds are being used to support the North Jersey Initiative on Heroin Trafficking and Violent Drug Gangs. This initiative includes the Narcotics Task Forces of the four covered counties as well as the Special Projects Unit of the Division of State Police. These organizations, in turn, work closely with federal and local agencies. All of the agencies will be participating in regularly scheduled information sharing conferences in which they will update each other on their progress and define areas of cooperation that are needed.

As a spin-off to the HIDTA effort, the Hudson. and Bergen County Prosecutor's Offices are applying for a Regional Drug/Prosecutions Unit grant from the Department of Justice which would fund an analytical/enforcement planning unit to direct a combined task force of county and local personnel to target non- traditional organized crime heroin trafficking groups.

Various federal agencies in New Jersey are also funded by the HIDTA Program; including the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the U.S. Customs Service. The overall coordinator of the HIDTA Program in New Jersey is the United States Attorney's Office in Newark.

State/County HIDTA Contacts:
Captain Vincent Modarelli
Division of State Police
(609) 530-3080;

Linda J. Tartaglia
Division of Criminal Justice
(609) 984-0055;

Captain Albert Mellone
Bergen County Prosecutor's Office
(201) 646-2300;

Captain William Luzzi
Essex County Prosecutor's Office
(201) 621-4670;

Captain James Lorenzo
Hudson County Prosecutor's Office
(201) 795-6400; and

Captain William Jagusak
Union County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 527-4500.

Camden GANG IMPACT Task Force

The Camden GANG IMPACT Task Force focuses on long-range investigations into significant gangs and drug networks. The IMPACT Task Force focuses on shorter-term, street-level investigations into gangs, drugs and drug-related violence. Both task forces are supported by an intelligence function designed in cooperation with the Department of Law and Public Safety. These task forces were created as part of a Memorandum of Understanding between the participating agencies which was executed in April 1992.

The Divisions of Criminal Justice and State Police, the Camden County Prosecutor's Office, the Camden City Police Department, the Camden County Sheriff's Office, and federal agencies, including the Federal Bureau of Investigation; the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms; the U.S. Marshall's Service; and the Drug Enforcement Administration are participants in this two-tiered approach to controlling drug- and gang-related violence in Camden.

Camden GANG IMPACT Task Force Contacts:
Thomas Kelly
Camden County Prosecutor's Office
(609) 757-8465;

Detective Richard Carlin
Criminal Enterprise and Racketeering Bureau
Division of State Police
(609) 767-2198


Border Anti-Drug Team (BADT)

The Border Anti-Drug Team (BADT) is a multi-jurisdictional task force developed by the Middlesex and Somerset County Prosecutors' Offices to address the problem of an urban narcotics supply center frequented by customers from bordering counties. The Team was first deployed on the Franklin (Somerset County)/New Brunswick (Middlesex County) border and included personnel from both Prosecutors' Offices, the Franklin Township Police Department and the New Brunswick Police Department.

The main strategy was a cooperative effort among the four agencies to eliminate geographic enforcement boundaries which were often used by drug suppliers to avoid apprehension. The BADT targeted street-level dealers, particularly those who sold to the occupants of passing automobiles. In this enforcement effort, both the sellers and the buyers were targeted and arrested. The two-fold goal of interrupting the ongoing distribution network and to discourage customers from other areas was realized as the efforts resulted in a significant number of arrests, weapons and drug seizures.

The concept was adopted in Plainfield, Union County, with the participation of the Plainfield Police Department, the Union County Prosecutor's Office, the Somerset County Prosecutor's Office, the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office, the North Plainfield Police Department, the Piscataway Police Department and the South Plainfield Police Department. This effort was also very successful, resulting again in a significant number of arrests, drug seizures and forfeitable property.

Border Anti-Drug Team Contact:
Major Robert Mikell
Somerset County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 231-7100;

Assistant Prosecutor Ronald G. Kercado
Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 745-3300; and

Deputy Chief David Regal
Union County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 527-4500

Tactical Narcotics Team - Monmouth County (TNT)

The Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office instituted a Tactical Narcotics Team in 1991, modeled after one used in Miami, Florida. It included personnel f rom the Monmouth County Narcotics Strike Force, the Monmouth County Sheriff's Office, the Asbury Park Police Department and the Neptune Police Department.

The objective of the program is to place significant law enforcement resources into known high-volume drug areas. Buyers, as well as drug sellers, are placed at risk if observed by the TNT.

The program worked in five phases--target selection, intensive intelligence gathering, aggressive enforcement, maintained police presence and intermittent follow-up. During the target selection phase, citizen groups were contacted and told of the overall plan. The program met with enthusiastic community support.

TNT's first initiative was in Asbury Park and included four major drug trafficking spots. Among the strategies employed was the positioning of an officer as a spotter near a known spot for dealing. Upon observing drug deals, the officer would radio his colleagues to apprehend the buyers he described. The TNT's efforts also netted dealers of cocaine.

The Tactical Narcotics Team Program continued through 1992 in Asbury Park, Freehold and Red Bank. It was funded, in part, by the narcotics block grant to the Monmouth County Narcotics Strike Force.

Monmouth County TNT Contact:
Assistant Prosecutor Donald Peppler
Monmouth County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 431-7160

Tactical Narcotics Team - Middlesex County (TNT)

The Middlesex County Narcotics Task Force developed a Tactical Narcotics Team to reduce drug sales at mid- and street levels, maintaining control of affected areas through sustained enforcement. Its objectives were:

  • to eliminate the open market and visible drug sales occurring at problem locations in Middlesex County;
  • to identify narcotics traffickers using the Task Force Police-Kar intelligence system;

  • to target those traffickers, sellers and users for arrest and prosecution;

  • to identify and target career criminals for arrest, prosecution and enhanced penalties;

  • through local police departments, to enhance a public awareness campaign.

Some strategies used by the Middlesex County TNT include the evaluation of selected target areas, including high drug intensity areas and community concerned areas, the development and use of intelligence, the use of asset forfeiture, and the follow-up of TNT activities by local police saturated patrol. Local police also offer assistance through attendance at community meetings and by helping to organize neighborhood watches. Since the inception of the Middlesex County TNT Program, over 540 arrests have been made.

Middlesex County TNT Contact:
Assistant Prosecutor Ronald G. Kercado
Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 745-3300

Drug Market Analysis Project

The objectives of the Drug Market Analysis Project are to implement computer mapping capabilities within the police department, to identify and assess computer needs in the department, and to disseminate information to law enforcement agencies regarding appropriate methods of controlling drug trafficking. The program assists street-level enforcement by systematically collecting and using information on drug enforcement markets. Data on tips from the community, arrest records, calls for service and community surveys are funneled into a mapping program. Information on the type of drug and the sales techniques are also incorporated. Strategies are then developed which reflect the type of activity occurring within that drug market.

The Jersey City Police Department, Hudson County, is one of five sites around the country which received Bureau of Justice Assistance funding to implement a computer information system that centralizes location-specific knowledge about drug trafficking. The project is being done in cooperation with Rutgers University.

The first phase of the project was to develop methods for gathering data and for compiling and integrating information from separate data bases. That phase has been completed, and the Jersey City project is currently in the phase of developing and testing strategies in targeted markets and in controlled markets.

Drug Market Analysis Contacts:
Captain Frank Gajewski
Jersey City Police Department
(201) 547-4310; and

Dr. David Weisburd
Rutgers University
(201) 648-5204

Operation Spinal Cord

Operation Spinal Cord is a program begun by the Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office which focuses on the Route 1 Transportation Corridor between Plainsboro and Woodbridge. U.S. Route 1 is a major central New Jersey travel artery. The program's goal is to interdict narcotics traffickers and to develop information from the transporters on the distribution networks in which they are involved. To support the operations, communications have been set up among participating police agencies. Joint training has been given, and several municipalities are now using drug detection canines to support their responses to the road stops. Information on activities is shared among the departments, and it is judged to be an effective multi-jurisdictional program.

Operation Spinal Cord Contact:
Assistant Prosecutor Ronald G. Kercado
Middlesex County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 745-3300

DEA/Local Task Forces

On numerous occasions, the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) of the U.S. Department of Justice works investigations jointly with state, county and/or local police. One of the mechanisms for this cooperation is the DEA Drug Enforcement Task Force. Participation in the Task Force is usually tied to a particular investigation being undertaken. Officers from agencies are then called upon to be assigned to the DEA Task Force. Some County Narcotics Task Forces also have DEA liaisons assigned to them. In this way, the free flow of information and coordination occurs through all levels of narcotics law enforcement.


During a survey of what drug programs municipal officials believed to be the most effective, Police Chief James L. Barnum of Franklin Township, Gloucester County, said, "Public awareness and education within the school system is our last hope of effectively controlling this social (drug) problem." That survey, of over 500 municipalities, showed an overwhelming response by police officials in favor of drug education programs, with particular emphasis on law enforcement drug education programs in the schools.

The 1990 Drug and Alcohol Use Among New Jersey High School Students Report has revealed encouraging trends in our schools regarding drug use. Between 1986 and 1989, the number of students reporting ever having used cocaine dropped by 51 percent, the number reporting ever having used marijuana dropped by 35 percent and the number reporting ever having used heroin dropped by 33 percent. These declines are reflective, in part, of law enforcement and drug awareness education programs in the schools. In addition, the New Jersey Department of Education has instituted mandatory K-12 drug curriculum.

The Department of Education conducts an annual survey entitled "The Drug and Alcohol Local Program Elements Survey." Among the data sought is the number of students referred for drug and/or alcohol treatment. The Comprehensive Statewide Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Master Plan, prepared by the Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, reported that 32,553 students in grade level 7 through 12 were referred for assistance; almost 4,800 students in grade level K through 6 were referred.

While the High School Survey indicated progress on casual use of drugs among students, those students using drugs and needing assistance remain at an unacceptably high level. Additionally, neither of these surveys were reflective of use by a high-risk group--school drop-outs. Therefore, actual usage of illegal substances may be significantly higher among student-aged persons than reflected in those reports.

The Action Plan encouraged the coordination of demand reduction activities by the Attorney General's Office and suggested the development of drug prevention courses and related instructor training programs. This Action Plan II reflects the progress which has been made on drug prevention in the schools and expands that concept to include similar programs for parents and community members. It is reflective of the nearly universal support for drug education which was voiced by the group which provided input for this report.


The directives relating to police presentations in the schools are to be fulfilled in compliance with the Model Agreement Between Education and Law Enforcement Officials, dated March 25, 1992, Article 3.1, Law Enforcement Participation in Educational Programs, Section C, which provides:

. . . no law enforcement officer shall be permitted to provide a course of instruction to students unless the officer has been invited or requested to provide such course of instruction by the appropriate school official, or the course of instruction has otherwise been approved by the appropriate school official.

Directive 4.1: All police agencies are required to participate in drug education activities within their jurisdictions.

Directive 4.2: Each County Prosecutor's Office shall designate a law enforcement school education coordinator.

Directive 4.3: Each County Prosecutor's Office shall make available to schools in the county a block of in-service drug instruction for school employees.

Directive 4.4: Law enforcement and educators shall train and heighten the awareness of school students, school staff and parents of school students on drug issues, including drug law, privacy issues and Attorney General policies.

Directive 4.5: Every law enforcement agency shall provide required information for the Annual Drug Abuse Resistance Education Report.


The following are brief summaries of several drug education programs currently in use in New Jersey. There are others that are localized to a particular school district or county that were not included, but nonetheless may be viable, productive programs.

Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.)

The Drug Abuse Resistance Education (D.A.R.E.) Program began in 1983 in Los Angeles, California, but did not start receiving national attention until the late 1980s. It is designed to equip elementary school-aged children with the skills necessary to resist peer pressure to experiment with drugs, alcohol and tobacco. D.A.R.E. is now used in 49 states and at least six foreign countries. In New Jersey, there are currently over 900 trained D.A.R.E officers.

The D.A.R.E. Program began by implementing 17 weekly sessions in grades 5 and 6. It now includes all grade levels, K- 12.

The results of the D.A.R.E. Program have been very positive. A 1989 survey of D.A.R.E. students in Los Angeles showed that 100 percent indicated that they would be more likely to say no to drugs and alcohol as a result of the program.

In New Jersey, a D.A.R.E. Association has been formed. D.A.R.E. training, a requirement for all D.A.R.E. officers, is offered several times a year.

DARE Contact:
Sergeant James Eden
New Jersey State Police
(908) 449-5200

Defenders Against Drugs (D.A.D)

Defenders Against Drugs (D.A.D) is a program initiated by the Union County Prosecutor's Office which targets kindergarten through fourth grade school students and encourages them to "say no" to drugs. D.A.D is sponsored by the New Jersey Narcotic Enforcement Officers Association and the Union County Prosecutor's Office.

Training aids used include D.A.D pledge cards, D.A.D badges, patches, membership cards, book covers and certificates. The program has been presented in 12 of the State's 21 counties. The D.A.D Program, which began in 1986, also has monthly radio shows and newspaper columns on aspects of the anti-drug abuse program in Union County.

D.A.D Contact:
Lieutenant Leo J. Uebelein
Union County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 527-4500

Greater Ocean Opposes Drugs (G.O.O.D.)

Greater Ocean Opposes Drugs (G.O.O.D.) is the Ocean County Prosecutor's comprehensive demand reduction effort. This program is funded by the Prosecutor's Office. Its message is relayed via television, billboards, bumper stickers, video tapes, in-person presentations, booths at fairs, coloring books, posters and even restaurant placemats. The anti-drug message is given in the schools, to senior citizens, to churches, to service organizations and to corporations.

G.O.O.D. Contact:
Prosecutor Daniel Carluccio
Ocean County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 929-2027

Crime Prevention/McGruff

Just as law enforcement has recognized that a concerted and coordinated effort must be undertaken to lessen the hold of drugs on our society, so the education/prevention effort has seen that crime prevention, in general, goes hand in hand with demand reduction.

The National Crime Prevention Council Program, McGruff ("Take a Bite Out of Crime"), has been expanded to include a drug abuse prevention component. There are McGruff anti-drug video messages, audio cassettes, drug abuse computer software programs and drug education materials.

McGruff Contacts:
Lieutenant Donald Wactor
Orange Police Department
Essex County
(201) 266-4140; and

Michael J. Renahan
Police Bureau
Division of Criminal Justice
(609) 984-7644


The Action Plan was designed to comprehensively mobilize state law enforcement resources. That effort necessarily impacted upon all facets of governmental and community life. While police activity and police presence certainly act to suppress drug activity and crime, there are simply too few officers available to provide continued diligence. Limited police resources, coupled with the demands of other police responsibilities, such as traffic control and emergency responses, necessarily require a community-based response to temporary police presence. The community must develop a mechanism to prevent drug abuse in their neighborhoods. Community responsibility must provide an alternative. Obviously, while police are part of that solution, they cannot be the entire solution. While the police are the first step in protecting the neighborhood, much depends on the continued participation of the community. Drug education, treatment and prevention must have an environment in which to flourish. Returning from a treatment facility to a neighborhood in which drugs are openly available is a prescription for failure.

Derivatively, once a healthy, anti-drug environment is established, a corresponding decrease in all crimes can be anticipated. In order to make that type of progress, a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary approach is essential. Such programs start with police presence that gives established education, treatment and prevention plans an opportunity to work.

Through federal grants, state funding, reallocation of resources and local initiative, several programs incorporating the multi-discipline method have been attempted. They can serve as models of agency and community cooperation.


Directive 5.1: All law enforcement agencies shall participate in multi-disciplinary programs to the fullest extent resources allow.

Directive 5.2: All law enforcement agencies shall work with other agencies to develop and implement multi-disciplinary approaches to community crime problems.


Weed and Seed

Weed and Seed is a Trenton program funded by the United States Department of Justice, the Attorney General of New Jersey and the agencies participating in the program. It represents a comprehensive and integrated approach to addressing violent crime, drug abuse, and deteriorating social and economic opportunities within the community. Weed and Seed recognizes, through the program's steps, that communities did not deteriorate overnight and that reclaiming them takes planning and time. The first task, "weeding," is the infusion of intensive law enforcement resources to remove and incapacitate violent criminals and drug traffickers from targeted neighborhoods and housing projects. This task is done by the Violent Offender Removal Project (VORP) Task Force, consisting of federal, state, county and municipal law enforcement personnel. The program targets repeat offenders and seeks maximum exposure to criminal penalties. For example, persons involved in drug activity who are arrested in possession of a weapon can be prosecuted under the federal statutes which carry significantly enhanced penalties.

The second task, stabilization, employs a Community-Oriented Policing Program run by the City of Trenton Police Department. The program provides foot patrols in four designated "safe haven" areas. Specially trained officers provide liaison to community groups to identify neighborhood problems and effect solutions. Support of community town watches is also a part of the community policing component.

The third task, "seeding," provides economic, educational and social opportunities. These programs are developed by the participating state, federal and local agencies in conjunction with community organizations. The programs include safe haven after-school programs, student tutoring and urban development. This initiative is designed to strengthen legitimate community institutions, organize and train citizens and resident groups, enhance home and apartment security procedures, and undertake low- cost physical improvements.

Weed and Seed Contact:
Linda Tartaglia
Division of Criminal Justice
(609) 984-0055

Drug-Free Housing Initiative

The State's model Drug-Free Housing Initiative has been in place at the Seth Boyden Project in Newark since 1990. The program goal is to provide a coordinated approach to reducing drug-related crime resulting in a positive change in the quality of life for the residents in that housing neighborhood. Similar to Weed and Seed, the first program step was to establish a law enforcement presence in the housing project. Thereafter, residents and participating agencies collaborated to strategize an approach to reducing drug-related crime. The program included demand reduction activities, counseling, tenant empowerment and physical renovations.

An amalgam of agencies participate in the Project, including the Newark Housing Authority, the Newark Police Department, the Seth Boyden Tenants' Council, the Department of Corrections, the Essex County Prosecutor's Office, the Newark City Administration, the U.S. Housing and Urban Development Department, and the New Jersey Departments of Health, Education and Community Affairs. The Division of Criminal Justice, Law Enforcement Coordination and Planning Section, acts as project director for the Drug-Free Housing Program. Task-oriented subcommittees on security, physical improvements and maintenance, resident leadership and training, social service programs, youth development and school programs, lease enforcement, and economic outreach and training have been established.

This Project draws upon existing available programs to support its objective, including:

  • D.A.R.E. (Drug Abuse Resistance Education Program);
  • Youth Development Program (Department of Health);

  • Primary Mental Health Program (Department of Education);

  • Comprehensive Assistance Program (U.S. Housing and Urban Development);

  • Security and Substance Awareness Training (City of Newark);

  • Organization Skills and Resident Leadership Training (Department of Community Affairs);

  • Recreational Program (Department of Corrections and Newark Board of Education);

  • Security Guards in Elderly Buildings (City of Newark)

  • Renovation Program (Department of Corrections and Newark Housing Authority);

  • Local-Level Training Project (Juvenile Justice Unit, Division of Criminal Justice).

Drug-Free Housing Initiative Contact:
Heddy Levine-Sabol
Division of Criminal Justice
(609) 292-1502

City of Newark Initiatives - IDEA, Homestead and Fighting Back

"Operation IDEA" was a joint operation between the New Jersey Department of Law & Public Safety and the Newark Police Department intended to focus law enforcement resources in a particular area of the city. State Police personnel were assigned with Newark police officers to highly visible patrols in designated high drug crime areas. Additionally, the teams conducted surveillance, undercover and "reverse sting" operations. Deputy Attorneys General were assigned to expedite the cases resulting from arrests. There was also coordination with the courts, public defenders, the Department of Corrections, county correction agencies and the County Prosecutor's Office. There were 672 arrests during IDEA, including 70 juveniles.

"Operation Homestead" was instituted by the Newark Police Department as a follow-up to the street sweeps of Operation IDEA. A comprehensive Community-Oriented Policing Program in carefully targeted neighborhoods and high-rise apartment complexes is the program objective. The primary focus of Homestead is to disrupt drug trafficking and other criminal activity through a highly visible and active uniformed police presence. Homestead has been implemented without outside funds; patrol support for the program has been received from the Division of State Police. Five officers are assigned to patrol a ten block area. Problem- oriented policing is practiced with the officers becoming involved in a broad range of programs; local police have literally moved into targeted buildings by working out of apartments provided by building owners. They have created mini- substations from which a host of police and community stabilization activities can occur.

The results of Operation Homestead have been a decrease in crimes against persons and property, including murder, rape, aggravated assault, burglary, theft, motor vehicle theft, vandalism and robberies. Block watch groups have been strengthened and "safe ways" have been established. In the future, the Newark police intend to institute community policing on a broader level, using mobile vans as mini police stations.

"Fighting Back" is the third component of the Newark program. This is funded through a $3 million, five-year grant from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. Newark is one of 15 cities around the country that was considered for the grant. The objective of the program is to develop a comprehensive plan to reduce the demand for illicit drugs and alcohol through community control of behavior, rather than through government intervention.

Newark Fighting Back has created a neighborhood coalition in one neighborhood which includes:

  • the development of youth councils;
  • intensive community supervision for juvenile offenders;

  • weekend canteens at a local church for the 13-16-year-old age group;

  • late-night basketball leagues;

  • community support group for recovering substance abusers;

  • block cleanups;

  • community gardens;

  • field trips for children;

  • increased involvement at local recreation centers;

  • health awareness workshops;

  • job fairs;

  • single parent support groups;

  • the development of a resource directory of after-school opportunities available in local schools and other youth-serving agencies.

In addition, religious institutions and schools have opened their doors beyond traditional hours to serve as meeting places for residents. Tenant associations have been strengthened and residents are referring neighbors to treatment.

IDEA and Homestead Contact:
Lieutenant Thomas Brennan,
Newark Police Department
(201) 733-6189

Fighting Back Contact:
Diana Bella
Boys' and Girls' Club of Newark
(201) 242-1800

The Alliance System

The Alliance system was created by the Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. Its goal is to develop alcohol and drug abuse prevention and public awareness programs and networks in every municipality in the State. The Governor's Council provides technical assistance, information, training and funding to the Alliances.

The Municipal Alliances are funded through the mandatory Drug Enforcement Demand Reduction penalties required to be imposed by the Comprehensive Drug Reform Act of 1986 on those convicted for drug violations. As of December 1991, 441 of New Jersey's 567 municipalities had organized working Alliances. All Municipal Alliances must include in their membership representatives from the local government, the police, the health care community, business schools and community organizations. School substance abuse coordinators are active in all Alliances; parenting programs are an integral aspect of Alliance programs; and community awareness programs are supported, including youth activities, recreational programs, drug and alcohol education, media campaigns, and community-based celebrations.

The Municipal Alliances are linked to the county-level Local Advisory Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse (LACADA). The LACADA develops a county plan that addresses the need for alcoholism and drug abuse services. In addition, a Governor's Alliance Summit is sponsored yearly which showcases innovative alliance programming from around the state.

Municipal Alliance Contact:
John Krieger
Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse
(609) 777-0535

Police/Community Partnership Program

The Police/Community Partnership Program was developed by the Division of Criminal Justice to meet the need for a statewide response to urban violent crime. This program is receiving $5 million initial funding for fiscal year 1993 through the Drug Control and System Improvement Block Grant from the United States Department of Justice and was instituted in several cities during the fall of 1992. Successful applicants are eligible to receive second-year funding as well.

The program includes four component-objectives similar to those of the "Weed and Seed" Program.

Violent Offender Removal Component: To develop a comprehensive multi-agency strategy to target and apprehend street gang and drug-trafficking criminals in target high- crime neighborhoods.

Community-Oriented Policing Component: To institute a Community Policing Program in at least one target area that will involve the mobilization of community residents to assist law enforcement in identifying problems and proposing solutions.

Safe Haven/Community Center Component: To establish at least one Safe Haven/Community Center in the target area that will provide activities and programs for residents in a secure environment.

Neighborhood Revitalization: To develop and implement a plan that addresses social and economic problems in the target communities and to provide a comprehensive and focused framework under which public agencies, the private sector, community organizations and citizens can form partnerships to enhance public safety and the overall quality of life.

Community Policing Partnership Program Contact:
Dennis O'Hara
Division of Criminal Justice
(609) 292-5939

Plainfield Project

The Plainfield Project was begun by the Union County Prosecutor's Office in cooperation with the Plainfield Police Department and the county Victim-Witness Office. The Project is funded, in part, by the State Office of Victim Advocacy.

The Union County Prosecutor's Office established a satellite office to provide residents in the western portion of the county greater access to County Prosecutor services. The satellite office is staffed by an assistant prosecutor, an experienced investigative supervisor and a victim witness counselor. The County Prosecutor has made a five-year commitment to the program.

Training and technical assistance on management, narcotics training and electronic surveillance training has been provided to Plainfield Police Department personnel. Town meetings are attended by Prosecutor's Office staff. Both the Prosecutor's Office and the local police have worked with the community to develop town watch and demand reduction activities.

One strategy employed targeted a known drug market location. Dealers and crack houses were identified, probable cause to search and arrest were established, but action was temporarily held in abeyance. A weekend day was selected on which to arrest all dealers present, serve all arrest warrants and interdict the crack houses with search warrants. Cars parked illegally were towed, streets were cleaned, and "stashes" hidden in bushes and other places were swept into the gutters and washed away. Local police distributed literature on home security, drug prevention and available treatment services.

For several weekends thereafter, the local police distributed literature and assisted in demand reduction activities in the neighborhood. This had a positive impact on coalescing community members.

Plainfield Project Contact:
Prosecutor Andrew Ruotolo
Union County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 527-4500

Operation Schoolhouse

In 1990, the Ocean County Prosecutor's Office began Operation Schoolhouse in Berkeley Township, Ocean County. In addition to the law enforcement component, an education component, a housing component and a demand reduction component were included in the program.

Operation Schoolhouse began in a 45-unit apartment complex which had a history of numerous drug arrests. Law enforcement conducted several buy/busts, sell/busts and general sweeps in the area and provided a "tip line" for use by residents of the complex.

This multi-disciplinary program began with an effort to start after-school tutoring for students from the complex. That tutoring occurred in the complex's community center, leased by the Board of Education from the Housing Authority. Thus, the complex became a drug-free school zone. The Prosecutor's Office assigned personnel to be present for the evening hours of the tutoring to assure that the program would not be thwarted by drug dealers. In addition, the Prosecutor's Office purchased photo identification cards for all the tenants and worked with the Housing Authority and Tenants' Association to develop a visitors' policy.

The Housing Authority agreed to pursue the removal of tenants convicted of drug offenses. The Authority also works with the Tenants' Association to enlist their continuing support. The Ocean County Jail made available a prisoner clean-up crew to clean the grounds of the complex at the onset of the program.

Results of Operation Schoolhouse include a 77 percent decline in the number of calls for service from the community during the period Schoolhouse was running, compared to the immediately preceding eight months. The program received the 1991 National Association of Counties Achievement Award.

Operation Schoolhouse Contact:
Prosecutor Daniel Carluccio
Ocean County Prosecutor's Office
(908) 929-2027

Community Responses to Drug Abuse (CRDA) Models

The National Crime Prevention Council in Washington, D.C. , has completed a survey of neighborhood responses to the drug crisis. The resultant publication, Creating a Climate of Hope, is a look at ten programs, their strategies, their signs of success, contact persons and a resource listing.

The communities studied were part of the Community Responses to Drug Abuse initiative (1989-1991) funded by the United States Bureau of Justice Assistance. Program guidelines required that each model actively involve law enforcement, include a multi- sector task force and have a locally designed work plan. In Hartford, Connecticut, for example, the group, Hartford Areas Rally Together (HART), was funded. The program allowed HART to develop an anti-drug consortium that focused on:

  • developing a drug education curriculum;
  • creating after-school activities for youth;

  • developing treatment facilities for adolescents;

  • creating drug-free subsidized housing;

  • strengthening the partnership between the community and the police.

HART's results included dozens of drug houses being shut down, crime statistics being lowered, over 1,000 young people being involved in after-school programs, a 25 percent increase in summer employment opportunities for youth and several hundred housing units being rehabilitated.

Community Responses to Drug Abuse Contact:
National Crime Prevention Council
1700 K Street, NW, Second Floor
Washington, DC 20006-3817
(202) 466-6272.



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