Methyl amphetamine is a synthetic stimulant drug and a type of amphetamine-type stimulant that is illegal in all Australian jurisdictions. Methyl amphetamine comes in several forms, including tablet, powder, crystal and oil. The most commonly available form in Australia is crystalline (‘ice’) followed by powder (‘speed’). Of all illicit drugs, the ACC assesses that methyl amphetamine, and in particular crystal methyl amphetamine, poses the highest risk to the Australian community and is of significant national concern. The ACC has identified significant changes in the nature and scale of the methyl amphetamine market since 2010, and particularly since 2013. The purity has increased and crystal methyl amphetamine is now the dominant form of the drug. Of particular concern is the diversification in the supply of methyl amphetamine to the market. Where domestic production has traditionally been adequate to supply a relatively stable user base, since 2010 there has been a considerable increase in the number and weight of detections at the Australian border. Several seizure records have been set, and this upward trend is continuing. This growth has occurred without a concurrent fall in domestic production, as indicated by the number of clandestine laboratory detections and the high volume of precursor seizures. Serious and organised crime is driving these trends and user demand. More than 60 per cent of Australia’s highest risk criminal targets, including transnational targets, are involved in the methyl amphetamine market. The majority of these targets are involved in multiple drug markets. The growth in scale of serious and organised crime involvement is the result of the significant profits to be made, the move by crime groups to poly-drug2 trafficking and an increase by users in poly-drug use. Serious and organised crime groups are also increasingly involved in the importation and trafficking of precursor chemicals, and are adept at developing new manufacturing techniques to avoid controls over sales of key precursor chemicals. The ACC assesses that the Australian methyl amphetamine market will continue to grow in the short to medium term. This expansion can only be addressed by the collective efforts of the Australian Government, state and territory governments, non-government organisations, industry and the community.
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The Whitehouse Office of National Drug Control Policy Staff on July 28, 2014
The New York Times editorial board opined in its Sunday July 27, 2014 edition that the Federal government should legalize marijuana for adults aged 21 years and older. The New York Times editorial board compares Federal marijuana policy to the failure of alcohol prohibition and advocates for legalization based on the harm inflicted on young African American men who become involved in the criminal justice system as a result of marijuana possession charges. We agree that the criminal justice system is in need of reform and that disproportionality exists throughout the system. However, marijuana legalization is not the silver bullet solution to the issue.
Read More… http://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2014/07/28/response-new-york-times-editorial-marijuana-legalization
The chief advisor on drug policy in the Obama administration visited Australia late in 2012 and disclosed the United States drug policy focus of prevention and recovery.
In addressing the political, government and community leaders, Director Kerlikowske highlighted-
Australia needs to follow the U.S.A. and scrap its illicit drug maintenance programs, focusing on prevention, education and rehabilitation for users to get them free of their addiction.
That the U.S.A. has looked to Sweden for a successful drug policy should be followed here in Australia.
Australia can learn how to reduce its high illicit drug using population by court ordered and supervised drug rehabilitation.
The Australian Federal Police have identified six crime bosses operating in Australia that have each amassed $100 million in unexplained wealth from illicit drugs.
Another 72 people have acquired more than $10 million each in unexplained wealth.
International drug traffickers focused on Australia because of astronomical returns due to the value of the Australian dollar.
According to the Australian Federal Police Commissioner the Mr. Bigs are two or three steps removed from the drug importation.
(Source: Melbourne Herald Sun newspaper 22 April 2013)
Whilst the high Australia dollar is attractive to international crime syndicate there is no doubt the high Australian illicit drug demand is driving imports.
Australia is a target for drug criminals because we are high illicit drug users.
A key strategy to cut off the drug money is to mandate drug rehabilitation to illicit drug users to drastically cut the demand for drugs.
Cutting drug use and the number of users is operating in other countries and is effective in drying up the money flow to the traffickers.
Worldâ€™s best practice uses the courts to divert illicit drug users into rehabilitation therefore saving the harm to users and saving health and border protection costs.
Synthetic drugs that mimic illicit drugs like cannabis, cocaine, amphetamines and ICE will be targeted in a crackdown in New South Wales.
This follows a parliamentary committee report recently released in New South Wales.
These products are dangerous and are known to lead to psychotic episodes and even deaths.
(Source: NSW Fair Trading media release 9 June 2013)
This crackdown should be followed by other state and territory governments who are faced with the same problem.
A 17 year old male in Sydney jumped off a balcony to his death after taking a synthetic drug recently.
Synthetic drugs are highly dangerous as the chemicals are unknown or are changed to keep one step in front of the law.
Other states like Victoria and Western Australia have banned these synthetic drugs but the adult shops where they are sold are operating with impunity.
With drug related deaths associated with synthetic drugs all states and territories as well as the federal government need to have a major crackdown.
What this demand for synthetic drugs shows is that young Australians are still caught up in the need for intoxication.
Youth intoxication shows that there is a great need for more drug rehabilitation services that get users free of drugs.
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