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Feds rethink crystal meth poster campaign

Feds rethink crystal meth poster campaign

Responding to complaints from many gay New York City residents, prosecutors have postponed a public awareness campaign featuring posters of convicted methamphetamine dealers. Authorities had planned to plaster the posters--with the defendants' names, mug shots, and sentencing information--in gay neighborhoods ravaged by the highly addictive stimulant. But after meeting with gay activists last week, prosecutors on Tuesday said in a statement that the posters "will not be released, pending further consideration of the matter." Activist Dan Carlson praised prosecutors for "their openness and willingness to hash this out." U.S. attorney David Kelley announced the campaign last month following the sentencing of a Manhattan artist, William Cullum, 46, to more than seven years in prison. The defendant was arrested last year after selling one ounce of crystal meth to an undercover agent for $2,800. Carlson and other activists argued that the campaign, rather than deter crystal meth use, would needlessly vilify addicts who were caught selling small amounts of the drug to their friends. They also said the campaign could undermine efforts within the gay community to treat users.

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