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People imprisoned in U.S. for drug offenses skyrockets from 41,000 to 507,000 in 30 years

No wonder states like California and others experienced a boom in prison construction beginning in the 1980s.

According to statistics compiled by The Sentencing Project, a nonprofit dedicated to prison reform, the total number of people in jails and prisons for violating drug laws soared from 41,000 in 1980 to 507,000 by 2010.