Comments Off on Global criminals cash in on Methamphetamine

Martin Omar Estrada LunaOrganized crime syndicates traditionally specialising in heroin or cocaine are turning to methamphetamine to feed a booming Australian market, classified police intelligence reports show.

The Australian Crime Commission has warned demand for methamphetamine, commonly known as ice, will continue to grow, even though Australian users pay some of the highest prices in the world for it.

The ACC will today take the unusual step of releasing parts of a normally classified report into the Australian ice market underlining the agency’s concern over the growing scale of the problem.

Charged with pursuing high-end organized crime syndicates, the ACC says that 60 per cent of its targets are now involved in the ice trade in some way.

Ruthless Mexican drug cartels are now targeting the lucrative Australian market and seeking out local partners such as outlaw motorcycle gangs, it is believed.

The agency found the purity of meth sold in Australia has greatly increased, making it even more dangerous.

The average street price per gram for the drug in China is $US 80 but it sells for $500 a gram in Australia.

The excerpts from classified reports show Iranian meth of very high purity is shipped through Asia to Australia.

“This indicates large-scale production using high-quality materials,” the ACC says.

“There appears to currently be significant production of methamphetamine in Mexico.”

The Government is expected to begin to map out its response to the ice crisis in coming weeks, with an increasing number of coalition MPs warning of the problem the drug is causing in their communities.

Justice Minister Michael Keenan said ice now posed the greatest threat to the Australian public of all drug types.

“Our nation’s addiction to this mind-eating, personality-distorting, life-ending drug is undermining the social fabric of communities and paying big dividends to organised crime syndicates that are profiting from misery,” Mr. Keenan said.

Recent studies have shown meth users are five times more likely to have psychotic symptoms than when not using.

Hospitals report that methamphetamine users presenting at emergency departments are more aggressive, violent and dangerous that most others.

Supreme Court Justice Michael Corboy recently voiced his concern at the links between ice and the “gross levels of irrational violence” in Perth.

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