Congressman Dan Boren said in a statement released Wednesday that most of the United State’s methamphetamine is now coming from Mexico.

His statement was bolster by information from Drug Enforcement Agency estimates that approximately 80 percent of the meth in Oklahoma is now manufactured in what is called Mexican “super” labs.

It's a higher-quality product that is much more potent and addictive than the meth people were making in the small at-home labs. The Mexican-made meth also has a much higher street price. When "mom and pop" labs dominated the market in Oklahoma meth averaged $43 an ounce. With the Mexican "super lab" meth dominating the market today the average street price is $1,500 an ounce.

Law enforcers believe the higher price is also driving crime rates up, Boren’s spokesperson Nick Choate said.

Carson and other members of the bipartisan congressional Caucus to Fight and Control Methamphetamine were briefed by Drug Czar John Walters, the nation's top drug policy official.

Walters reported on a new federal strategy unveiled last week aimed at dramatically reducing methamphetamine use in America.

“We've done what we can at the state and local level to combat meth,” Boren said. "With most of it now coming from Mexico, it's time for a federal strategy to address the problem."

In September 2005 Boren pressed the administration to address what he believes is a connection between illegal immigration and the flow of Mexican-made meth into the country.

In December 2005 the House of Representatives passed a border security measure aimed at cracking down on illegal immigration.

“We have to know what is coming across our borders before we can effectively crack down on meth,” Boren said.

The Synthetic Drug Control Strategy calls for a 15 percent reduction in methamphetamine use and a 25 percent reduction in domestic meth labs over the next three years.

In 2004 (the most current statistics available) 2,320 kilograms of meth were seized along the Southwest Border. For the five-year period from 2000-2004 that number is 7,800 kilograms.

The federal strategy takes a three-tiered approach, including effective implementation of a national precursor sales restriction, cracking down on the global market for precursor chemicals, and strengthening law enforcement activities along the border with Mexico.

“This has been treated as a regional problem for years. The administration has finally recognized this is a national problem that needs a national solution,” Boren said.

The first piece of legislation Boren introduced was an anti-meth bill modeled after Oklahoma's state law that puts pseudoephedrine-containing products behind pharmacy counters. Provisions like this were included in the Combat Meth Act passed by Congress and signed into law earlier this year.

Contact Clarice Doyle, e-mail cdoyle@cnhi.com