Record 11 tons of cocaine are seized in year, data shows

Record 11 tons of cocaine are seized in year as cheaper deals on the street fuel its use, data shows

  • Cocaine intercepted by police and Border Force was up 161 per cent year on year
  • Seizures of controlled drugs jumped a fifth to more than 223,000 to April 2021
  • But deaths from illegal drugs – 4,561 – hit a record high during lockdown in 2020
  • Deaths among cocaine users was up 10 per cent to 777. In 2011 the total was 112

Britain’s cocaine epidemic was laid bare yesterday as figures showed a record 11 tons of the drug was seized last year.

The amount intercepted by police and Border Force – 11,148kg – was up 161 per cent year-on-year.

Seizures of controlled drugs jumped by a fifth to more than 223,000 in the year to April 2021, Home Office data for England and Wales showed.

But deaths from illegal drugs hit a record high during lockdown in 2020, with 4,561 lives lost in England and Wales, according to the Office for National Statistics.

The amount of cocaine intercepted by police and Border Force – 11,148kg – was up 161 per cent year-on-year

Key to the rise was deaths among cocaine users, up 10 per cent to 777. The total stood at just 112 in 2011.

The increase was ‘a direct consequence of the increasing prevalence in cocaine use’, said the ONS. 

The class A drug is fashionable among young people in cities, easily available and cheap, it added.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said: ‘I continue to back the police and Border Force to use all available law enforcement powers to stop drugs from coming into our country and go after the kingpins destroying communities.’

Policing and crime minister Kit Malthouse said: ‘These seizures mean some nasty villains are nursing huge losses and probably can’t pay their debts. Good.’ 

He added: ‘Drug gangs ruin lives and dismantling their conspiracies for good means breaking their businesses and destroying their profits.

‘Well done to the Border Force and the police for tackling this head on.’

Policing and crime minister Kit Malthouse congratulated Border Force and the police for tackling the issue around class A drugs ‘head on’

Deaths among cocaine users was up 10 per cent to 777. The total stood at just 112 in 2011, ONS figures showed (stock image)

Yesterday’s figures also included experimental statistics showing a total of 2.12million doses of nitrous oxide, known as laughing gas, were seized by police and Border Force officers – more than six times the amount recorded for the previous year.

The Home Office report said the number and quantity of overall seizures ‘should not be taken as an indicator of drug prevalence’.

It added: ‘The coronavirus pandemic, and subsequent lockdowns in England and Wales, are likely to have affected indicators in this report, such as changes to the night-time economy and associated drug use, or changes in police and Border Force activity.’ 

Source: Read Full Article