"We don't have the significant sentences right now that would deter some of these individuals," Riverside County District Attorney Grover Trask said. "It's easy money."
In Arizona, the connection is so prevalent that Attorney General Terry Goddard now sends an investigator with identity theft expertise to meth lab busts.
Lucky, the Riverside County prosecutor, didn't realize personal information had been stolen from his mailbox until a caller said there had been fraudulent activity linked to his credit card.
He got suspicious when the caller requested his Social Security number. When he asked for a supervisor, he was given a toll-free number that was no longer in service.
Identity thieves later applied for credit in his name and the prosecutor didn't discover where his identity ended up until he got a call from a sheriff's deputy.
"I guess we weren't really surprised they found it at a meth lab," Lucky said.