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St. Louis County police officer Justin Sparks, right, arrests a man for having drug paraphernalia after the man allegedly attempted to purchase an over-the-counter cold medication containing pseudoephedrine in Fenton, Mo.

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Meth flourishes despite tracking laws

Cookers turn to ‘pill brokers’ who pay others to buy pills

At the height of the methamphetamine epidemic, several states turned to a new weapon to disrupt the drug trade: electronic systems that could track sales of the cold medicine used to make meth. But an Associated Press analysis of federal data reveals that the practice has failed to curb the meth trade, which is growing again after a brief decline.

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