A story coming out of the UK last week reported that a boat that recently docked in that country was carrying cannabis with a street value of more than Â£40m ($84m). According to the police that was enough of the drug to make approximately 72.5m joints -“ at 200mg of cannabis resin per joint -“ more than one joint for every man, woman and child in the UK.
Not a week goes past recently when we don’t hear another story about a major seizure of drugs either in Australia or overseas. A recent seizure of cocaine was the largest in Australia’s history and a couple of weeks ago WA police seized a huge methylamphetamine and ecstasy haul worth $77 million after searching a plane from NSW.
But it is the busting of an ecstasy ring on Sydney’s northern beaches that has really hit the headlines in the past week. The seizure of a pill press, pill counter, ecstasy, cannabis, ice, cocaine and glass pipes would always be a big story but, when the people being caught are famous sportsmen, it becomes one of the biggest stories of the year.
One of the most amazing things about the ecstasy market is that no matter how much of the drug is seized by police, there doesn’t seem to be any significant effect on availability.
I have worked in the alcohol and other drugs field for the past 15 years and in all that time I have never heard of a shortage of ecstasy. In fact, the price continues to drop, seeming to indicate that, even though more and more ecstasy is being caught at the border and Australian police are having greater success in closing down local manufacturers, the demand for ecstasy in this country is such that it ensures there are always people who will continue to take the risk of producing the drug.
So much money is spent on law enforcement across the world and we really see very little return on the huge investment. In fact it has been estimated that in Australia customs manages to stop only about one out of every 10 shipments of drugs brought into the country.
It has been suggested by some that it may be much more sensible to invest some of this money into trying to reduce the demand for drugs -“ sounds like a great idea to me.
Remember: if you do not want any negative consequences, do not use the drug and, no matter how many times you have used a substance, never be blas?/p>