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Drug Enforcement Administration facts for kids

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Drug Enforcement Administration
Abbreviation DEA
Dea color logo.svg
Logo of the Drug Enforcement Administration.
DEA badge.PNG
Badge of the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Agency Overview
Formed 1973, July 1
Preceding agencies
  • Bureau of Narcotics and Dangerous Drugs
  • Office of Drug Abuse Law Enforcement
Employees 10,891 (2006)
Annual Budget $2.415 billion USD (2006)
Legal personality Governmental agency
Jurisdictional Structure
Federal agency United States
General nature
  • Civilian agency
  • Federal law enforcement
Operational Structure
Headquarters Arlington, Virginia
Special agents 5,500+
Elected officer responsible Eric Holder, Attorney General
Agency executives
  • Chuck Rosenberg, Administrator
  • (Vacant), Deputy Administrator
Parent agency United States Department of Justice

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is a law enforcement agency that works for the United States Department of Justice that enforces the United States drug laws. The DEA is the agency with most responsible for drug enforcement in the U.S. and also shares its responsibilities with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It also has complete responsibility (duty to do something) for U.S. drug enforcement investigations in other countries.


Two DEA agents training

The Drug Enforcement Administration was created on 1 July 1973, by Reorganization Plan No. 2 of 1973, signed by President Richard Nixon on 28 March 1973. It suggested a single federal agency to enforce the federal drug laws as well as to join together and to organize the government's drug control efforts.

In 1999, the DEA opened the Drug Enforcement Administration Museum in Arlington, Virginia. In February 2003, the DEA started a Digital Evidence Laboratory in its Office of Forensic Sciences.


The DEA is run by an Administrator of Drug Enforcement who is given the job by the President of the United States and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. The Administrator's direct boss is the Attorney General through the Deputy Attorney General. It has its own training centre called the DEA Academy on the United States Marine Corps base at Quantico, Virginia with the FBI Academy. It has 21 domestic divisions inside the U.S. with 227 field offices and 86 foreign offices in 62 countries. With a budget of over 2.415 billion U.S. dollars, the DEA employs over 10,800 people, including over 5,500 Special agents.

Narcotics registration

The DEA has a system in place which allows doctors and other people, such as dentists, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners, to prescribe medicines, researchers and manufacturers access to "Schedule I" drugs, as well as Schedules 2, 3, 4 and 5.

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