You won’t find many, if any, people working in law enforcement ready to admit that marijuana trafficking isn’t still on their radar.
In fact, they will go to great lengths to tell you otherwise.
But when you are dealing with the emergence of the province’s deadliest killer drug fentanyl — a synthetic opioid 100 times more toxic than morphine — limited policing resources have to be focused on saving lives.
More than 400 Albertans have died from fentanyl overdoses since 2015 and there is an even more deadly version waiting in the wings. When you factor in the possible legalization of marijuana by the Trudeau government, the argument could be made that policing the production, possession and trafficking of marijuana has dropped down the priority list.
The number of clandestine grow-op busts by Alberta Law Enforcement Response Teams (ALERT) north of Red Deer have plummeted to just four so far this year from 20 in each of 2014 and 2015.