A new study suggests that violent crimes committed in states that border Mexico have decreased nearly 13% when medical marijuana became legalized in their jurisdiction. 

According to The Guardian, a majority of the marijuana consumed throughout the United States comes from Mexico, which means that providing residents with legalized American pot can help hinder a major catalyst to drug trafficking. While cartels do export other narcotics such as cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin, marijuana remains the largest drug in the U.S. market. The plant also provides cartels with the most profit, as one pound of the drug retails for $6,000, even though it costs $75 to produce. 

The researchers involved in the survey analyzed data collated between 1997 to 2012, with California experiencing the biggest change in violent activity, falling 15% once the state legalized the use of medical marijuana. Robbery and murder were the types of crime that took the steepest decline, falling a healthy 19% and 10%, respectively. 

However, Arizona is the state that saw the least change in drug-related infractions, falling only 7% once medical marijuana became legalized. 

The most impressive statistic brought forth by the studies reveals how homicides related to the drug trade were nearly slashed in half, decreasing by 41%.

Evelina Gavrilova, one of the authors on the study, has revealed how "when the effect on crime is so significant, it’s obviously better to regulate marijuana and allow people to pay taxes on it rather than make it illegal." Gavrilova also points out how farmers who cultivate medical marijuana "are in direct competition with Mexican drug cartels that are smuggling the marijuana into the U.S. As a result, the cartels get much less business."