NEWS: The Australian - 27/03/2006 'Australia is ecstasy capital'

hoptis

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Australia is ecstasy capital
From: By Simon Kearney
March 27, 2006

AUSTRALIANS are the biggest users of ecstasy in the world by a wide margin and the drug is becoming more popular by the day, prompting European syndicates to plan larger smuggling operations.

A series of police intelligence reports obtained by The Australian cite intelligence and UN figures on drug use, showing that ecstasy is becoming mainstream and that supplies of the drug are not being hindered by action to crack down on syndicates importing and manufacturing the dangerous party drug.

The reports indicate the market for the drug is highly lucrative for organised crime with Australians paying more for ecstasy than in traditional markets such as Europe.

They all point to the UN World Drug Report that has named Australians as first in the world for ecstasy use and second for amphetamine use.

Almost twice as many Australians use ecstasy (3.4 per cent) as the next-highest nationality, the British (2.0 per cent).

In an underlined section in a report on synthetic drugs, NSW police admit that the combined efforts of Australian law enforcement agencies have been unable to put a dent in the availability of ecstasy.

"Australia and Oceania may not yet have seen the peak in MDMA (ecstasy) consumption and with the growing supply from the Asian region there appears no problem with availability," the report says.

The NSW Crime Commission says there seem to be no barriers to getting ecstasy in Australia: "European organised crime groups (particularly from Britain, The Netherlands, Belgium and Israel) are targeting Australia for large-scale importations of ecstasy tablets, millions of pills at a time, due to the high profitability of the Australian market."

An AFP report on the syndicates describes them as operating "in a manner similar to that employed by multinational companies". One syndicate did cost-benefit analyses on ecstasy that took into account how foreign exchange rates would affect the smuggling operation.

The NSW Crime Commission and the AFP say the syndicates are increasingly competitive with low-quality locally operations stealing their market share. The reports say they are investing in expensive pill presses so their products cannot be forged, and sending professional chemists to supervise production outposts.

The reports were tabled in federal parliament earlier this month with the committee that oversees the Australian Crime Commission. The committee is examining whether Australia is doing enough to combat the scourge of synthetic illicit drugs.

A report by the Queensland Alcohol and Drug Research and Education Centre criticises police forces for inadequate information sharing, data collection and record keeping.

There have been large seizures of amphetamines and ecstasy in the past year, but the ACC reports that Australia is facing increasing threats from both transnational criminal groups and local manufacturers, which they admit may be producing more ecstasy than police realised.

The ACC has an entire section working on curbing the supply of synthetic illicit drugs, but has found that a third of its other investigations also involve some element of synthetic drug manufacturing or importing.

"Information obtained by the ACC indicates that organised crime elements are involved in ATS (amphetamine-type stimulants) production in NSW and Victoria, while Queensland attracts involvement from smaller and highly diverse criminal groups with serious and organised crime group connections," their report says.

The ACC said local manufacture was relatively easy with many devices needed to produce speed available for purchase on online auction sites.

Police services say that the use of "ice", a stronger and purer amphetamine, is also attracting Asian criminal syndicates, who now prefer the drug to heroin because of its profitability.

NSW police say their intelligence has found most ice enters Australia through New Zealand after being produced in "superlabs" in China, The Philippines, Malaysia and Fiji.

"Some Southeast Asian crime groups, having transferred their interests from heroin to ice, appear to be utilising the routes previously established for heroin supply and funds transfer," the report said.

"They recruit middle-aged couriers to each carry approximately 350 grams of ice, paying them $20,000 to $30,000."
From News.com.au / The Australian

EDIT: For reference here are some related threads from Aus DD on this topic.

Australia leads world in ecstasy use
NEWS: [SMH] 29/07/2005 - 'Illicit drug use hits a new high: 38%'
News - (SMH - Sept 24th) - Australia world's top ecstasy abuser: UN
Drug Usage Statistics 2002
 
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Tronica

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What they never mention in these sorts of reports is cocaine use. Australia has a lot less coke use than the UK, and if it is all combined use as psychostimulant drugs, I'm sure the crowning glory of more drug use in the world wouldn't be so easy for us to claim!

[equally i personally think that if coke was more available/pure/cheaper here, there would be less ecstasy use, as some people would switch drugs]
 

MooShiE

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AUSTRALIANS are the biggest users of ecstasy in the world by a wide margin

I would really like to know where this information was obtained from!

Go Aussie Go =D

Nothing else to do in this country ;)
 

johnboy

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MooShiE said:
AUSTRALIANS are the biggest users of ecstasy in the world by a wide margin

I would really like to know where this information was obtained from!
Are you serious? It is in the article. It is in the links below the article. It is from UN figures. The full report is here.

8)
 

zaineaol.nu

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Meh, well done australia.

You have proven yourself to be the biggest users of stimulants in the world - i don't really think we should be proud of that... especially considering the price they cost here.

Supply and Demand....
 

dada

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It seems to me that they release this same article every sixmonths or something, this is the third or forth time ive seen threads or heard news about it
 

hoptis

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Yeah they are rehashing. The 3.4% figure is from the National Drug Strategy Household Survey 2001, five years is a long time in the world of illicit drugs so who knows what the percentage might be if another authoritative survey were conducted today.

Another situation in regards to ecstasy that may need updating in future reports:

Clandestine ecstasy manufacture in Australia is limited.
- UNODC Report; Ecstasy and Amphetamines: Global Survey 2003, page 108

... and local manufacturers, which they admit may be producing more ecstasy than police realised.
- From article in first post

Besides from the old stat, the article also highlights the massive market in a country of 20-odd million people for amphetamine-type drugs is made even more lucrative by the artificially inflated prices paid here for ecstasy... probably a hangover from the past when much less of the drug was trafficked here?
 

tribesman

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As tronica mentioned also, I think that if cocaine was more readily available in Australia then the price of ecstasy would drop to try to compete as people did more cocaine and less ecstasy. I would say that these products are both relatively substitutable.
 

Tronica

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Australians top global ecstasy users
ABC Online, 27 March 2006

The National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre says ecstasy continues to be a popular recreational drug in Australia, while other drugs have gained more favour overseas. The centre's spokesman, Paul Dillon, was commenting on figures collected by the United Nations that Australia's ecstasy use far outstrips any other country, including Britain.

He says that is despite the higher price paid here of around $35 a tablet, compared with about $2.50 overseas. Mr Dillon says it is not that Australians are bigger drug users overall, but that people overseas have switched to other drugs. "Ecstasy is not seen as being a quality drug, it's not seen as a 'good value for money drug'," he said.

"So what is happening is that people are not simply stopping taking drugs, and I think that's the important part here, they actually swapped to another substance, [which is] often much more dangerous. "For example, in that case, they're moving to cocaine."
 

This_is_my_alias

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hoptis said:
.... peak in MDMA (ecstasy)....
(i know i'm childish)



If coke was cheaper, not only would i completley stop using ecstasy, I'd probably become a coke addict. my GOD. how fucking good is coke?!?!?!?
 

sydkiwi

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zaineaol.nu said:
Meh, well done australia.

You have proven yourself to be the biggest users of stimulants in the world - i don't really think we should be proud of that... especially considering the price they cost here.

Supply and Demand....
Go to NZ

Its more location, location, location and then supply and demand. We're still the biggest users per capita tho.
 

offgutsdiggy

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The NSW Crime Commission says there seem to be no barriers to getting ecstasy in Australia: "European organised crime groups (particularly from Britain, The Netherlands, Belgium and Israel) are targeting Australia for large-scale importations of ecstasy tablets, millions of pills at a time, due to the high profitability of the Australian market."


^^^^^^ yay more drugs
 

Special-T.B.K

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Everybody BOYCOT

BOYCOT
BOYCOT
BOYCOT

BOYCOT pills now.... lets bring that price down now!

SpecTBK=D
 

Special-T.B.K

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This_is_my_alias said:
(i know i'm childish)



If coke was cheaper, not only would i completley stop using ecstasy, I'd probably become a coke addict. my GOD. how fucking good is coke?!?!?!?
OVERATED, That's what it is. I much prefer MDMA (pure) over Cocaine. I'm onto good coke too, mate claims it's the best coke he's had in 27 years, since he was 18!

SpecTBK=D
 

Special-T.B.K

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hoptis said:
probably a hangover from the past when much less of the drug was trafficked here?
I would most definately say so and the price we pay here in Cairns in a club (i flatly refuse to pay) is the street value.... if you catch my drift- MUCH TOO EXPENSIVE. Those Israel etc... syndicates wana make money they should just focus on selling bulk club pills to Cairns... They would sell jack all and make double!

Could this influx mean cheaper pills?

SpecTBK=D
 

yun

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Tronica said:
$35 a tablet, compared with about $2.50 overseas
that's a lot of difference, but since they're planning larger smuggling operations, this means the price will go down?
 

Special-T.B.K

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I played host to a very drug friendly scottish guest... [EDIT: Sorry, no prices... the other ones mentioned above come from the news article so that's okay. hoptis]

But he also inclined to me that the pills were of no standard to the pills we have here, he said you would need 3-5 of their pills to get to the level of say a Green Mitsubishi, where as on average here I have found to get to the Mitsi level about 2-3 will do the trick on a maximum of our bunkest pills... (that I have consumed)

What does this all say- I feel the majority of our pills to be Australian made and not so much *imported* as claimed so often with good pills. I know there is alot of local folk manufacturing MDMA, so there is no doubt we are also pressing our own little cookies and lots of them! I would say these syndicates are just wanting in on the market... This could now make our syndicates make more bunk pills trying to compete with the overseas ones, whether or not this is the case... who knows!

SpecTBK=D
 
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