Shay Bilchik, Administrator December 1999

Youth Gang Drug Trafficking


Survey Methods

Program Implications


For Further Information



Related Reading

This Bulletin was prepared under cooperative agreement number 95-JD-MU-K001 from the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, U.S. Department of Justice.

Points of view or opinions expressed in this document are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of OJJDP or the U.S. Department of Justice.

The Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention is a component of the Office of Justice Programs, which also includes the Bureau of Justice Assistance, the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, and the Office for Victims of Crime.


From the Administrator

The combination of gangs and drugs has loomed for years as a particularly threatening aspect of the gang problem. Until quite recently, however, we lacked the data necessary for a clear understanding of the nature and complexity of youth gangs and their involvement with drug trafficking.

Using the results of the 1996 National Youth Gang Survey of law enforcement agencies, this Bulletin analyzes the participation of youth gang members in drug sales and the role of gangs in drug distribution. Although the authors found widespread drug trafficking among youth gangs, they report that serious involvement seems concentrated in a small number of areas and is overwhelmingly connected to young adult, rather than juvenile, gang members. Thus, jurisdictions should first assess the particular problem they confront in order to target their efforts to combat both gang and drug violence more effectively.

Youth Gang Drug Trafficking provides a thoughtful analysis of extensive youth drug trafficking data and identifies areas for further research. The Bulletin also discusses the policy implications of these findings for communities struggling to curb the negative impact of youth gangs in their midst.

Shay Bilchik


NCJ 178282

OJJDP Home | About OJJDP | E-News | Topics | Funding | Programs
State Contacts | Publications | Statistics | Events