There are a few countries around the world that have a zero tolerance approach to drug taking and trafficking. When I say zero, I mean it's a death sentence compared to jail time or a slap on the wrist.
While America is fairly hard on narcotics, it seems as though its leader, Donald Trump, would like to be tougher.
A senior White House official has told Axios that the President references Singapore's policy with drug trafficking, which is the death penalty. The source told the news site: "He says, 'When I ask the Prime Minister of Singapore do they have a drug problem, [the Prime Minister replies] 'No. Death penalty'.'
"He often jokes about killing drug dealers... He'll say, 'You know the Chinese and Filipinos don't have a drug problem. They just kill them'."
Several south-east Asian countries have the death penalty for traffickers, but the Philippines goes even further. President Rodrigo Duterte has made a name for himself for taking an incredibly hard approach to drugs in his country, with thousands of suspected dealers and addicts murdered as a result of his domestic policy since taking office in 2016.
Five sources have also told Axios that Trump likens drug traffickers to serial killers and believes those that transport drugs should get the death penalty. He says anything less than a tough stance on drugs won't work to reduce usage or deter kids from trying different substances.
While these sources claim the President would favour the death sentence for drug dealers, his counsellor Kellyanne Conway suggests it's a bit more specific than just anyone who sells narcotics.
"There is an appetite among many law enforcement, health professionals and grieving families that we must toughen up our criminal and sentencing statutes to match the new reality of drugs like fentanyl, which are so lethal in such small doses," she told Axios.
"The president makes a distinction between those that are languishing in prison for low-level drug offenses and the kingpins hauling thousands of lethal doses of fentanyl into communities, that are responsible for many casualties in a single weekend."
Synthetic opioids were responsible for nearly a third of fatal drug overdoses in America in 2016.
The Trump administration is trying to tackle the opioid crisis and could install measures that create a five-year mandatory minimum sentence for anyone trafficking the drug. At the moment, that level of punishment only applies to dealers caught pushing 40 grams of a substance.
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