A campaign against the practice known as "smurfing" was launched Monday in Lexington. Smurfing is the practice of buying drugs over the counter and selling them to illegal drug makers for profit. In Kentucky, meth cooks are using smurfs to avoid the state's real-time, stop-sell system that prevents pseudoephedrine buyers from going over the legal limit.
Governor Steve Beshear said at a press conference Monday the new campaign will place posters and tent cards at pharmacies across the state warning buyers of the consequences of smurfing. He says,
“Law enforcement is cracking down, we’ve passed laws to make it a felony to smurf. And now this educational campaign that everybody is working together on, I think will be a real deterrent.”
Smurfing is a felony punishable by jail time. The Consumer Healthcare Products Association tested the education messages in focus groups. Participation in the campaign is voluntary for retail pharmacies.