Drugs

Informer 3838: A web of deceit

In 2009, four Victoria Police officers would find themselves guarding their most valuable intelligence asset as she hid in the Hard Rock Hotel in Bali’s Kuta beach. Tammy Mills & Chris Vedelago The Age That year the lawyer-turned-informer, code-named 3838, had been receiving a stream of anonymous text messages and phone calls promising reprisals if she didn’t “stop telling lies” and “stop talking”. Police wanted to protect the lawyer until she could appear as a key witness in the most ... Read More »

Mexico’s New President Squares Up to High Hopes for Peace

On 1 December, Andrés Manuel López Obrador will assume Mexico’s presidency. He won pledging to end a drug war that has killed tens of thousands. Falko Ernst ICG But, as Crisis Group’s Mexico Senior Analyst Falko Ernst argues, he faces formidable challenges that will make it hard for him to uphold his promises. What are the main challenges facing López Obrador? Andrés Manuel López Obrador inherits several deepening crises. The first is crime: at least 200,000 people have been killed ... Read More »

‘Alarming’ number of women forced to move out of the Gatwick for The Block are now in jail

The lights, cameras and crowds have finally cleared out of St Kilda following the auctions last month at the Gatwick Private Hotel, a run-down three-storey rooming house that was… Hayley Gleeson ABC But as the new owners collect the keys and prepare to move in to their luxury lodgings, ABC News can reveal an “alarming” number of women who used to live at the Gatwick — a place of “last… Channel Nine’s purchase of the 1930s mansion, which in its ... Read More »

UN’s 10-year plan to tackle world’s drug problem has been ‘spectacular failure’ as production and consumption soar, report says

Drug-related deaths increase by 145 per cent and cultivation of opium poppies increases by 130 per cent, figures show Samuel Osborne Independent The UN’s 10-year global strategy to eradicate the world’s illegal drug market has been “a spectacular failure of policy”, a report by a network of 174 NGOs has concluded. The report said there had been a 145 per cent increase in drug-related deaths over the last decade, culminating in around 450,000 deaths per year in 2015. It also found that despite a ... Read More »

Cannabis in Canada: Shortages, fines and Girl Guide cookies

As Canada became the second country to legalise marijuana on Wednesday, some areas faced their first major challenge as supply failed to meet demand. BBC Customers queued for hours. Some retailers sold out on the first day, and shortages continued on Thursday. Online shoppers also faced delays as the new law came into effect, with high volumes affecting websites. Customers were warned to expect shipping delays of up to five days, as a postal strike looms next week. But the ... Read More »

Carl Sagan on why he liked smoking marijuana

Carl Sagan liked to smoke weed. His essay on why is facsinating. Scotty Hendricks big think The patron saint of nerds everywhere, Carl Sagan was an awesome human being. He wrote and hosted Cosmos, helped select the playlist of the Voyager Golden Records, had a distinguished academic career, and inspired both Bill Nye and Neil deGrasse Tyson to become the… Sagan wrote on a wide variety of topics, including astronomy, the need for truth in public discourse, world peace, and climate change. His brilliance is evident even in articles outside his ... Read More »

Turkey’s intel agency trafficked drugs and stolen vehicles to jihadists in Syria

A hushed-up investigation in Turkey’s capital city of Ankara in early 2014 reveals how intelligence officers on the payroll of the National Intelligence Organization (MİT) were involved in drug trafficking and… Abdullah Bozkurt TurkishMinute The confidential probe pursued by Turkish military intelligence into the activities of drug traffickers and an auto theft gang in Ankara exposed seven MİT agents who were unlawfully transporting drugs and… The clandestine operation was in clear breach of dozens of Turkish criminal laws as well ... Read More »

More people are dying from overdosing on prescription opioids

Rising numbers of Australians are dying from accidentally overdosing on prescription drugs morphine, codeine, oxycodone and fentanyl, the latest drug deaths data shows. Kate Aubusson The Sydney Morning Herald Australia has so far been spared the magnitude of the opioid “epidemic” in the US and its emerging fentanyl crisis, but drug experts were closely monitoring the creeping death rates linked to the synthetic drug. A total of 1045 people from 15 to 64 years old died from opioid overdoses in ... Read More »

This Man Is Making Cannabis Oil And Giving It Out For Free To Help Terminally Ill People

It is estimated that over a million people in the UK rely on medical marijuana for pain relief. In an unassuming suburban home in a nondescript modern housing estate in Birmingham, Satnam Bains*, a 42-year-old property developer, quietly distills litres of his own cannabis oil in a… Amardeep Bassey HuffPost Bains made it his business to learn how to make oil after his younger brother was diagnosed with a rare kidney cancer last year. “It came from nowhere and floored ... Read More »

Rodrigo Duterte commits to war on illegal drugs in Philippines State of the Union address

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte says he will not be stopping the war on drugs that has resulted in thousands of extrajudicial killings, saying while his critics’ “concern is human rights, mine is human lives”. ABC Speaking for his annual State of the Union address at a joint session of Congress, Mr Duterte reaffirmed his resolve to fight illegal drugs as he had during his first two years in power. He took a swipe at his critics who say his so ... Read More »

WSU Researchers see positive policing changes after cannabis legalization

Clearance rates improve for burglaries, vehicle thefts Washington State University EurekAlert! PULLMAN, Wash. – Washington State University researchers have found that marijuana legalization in Colorado and Washington has not hurt police effectiveness. In fact, clearance rates for certain crimes have improved. Clearance rates — the number of cases solved, typically by the arrest of a suspect — were falling for violent and property crimes in the two states before they authorized retail sales of marijuana late in 2012. The rates ... Read More »

The secret story of how America lost the drug war with the Taliban

A high-stakes plan to indict Afghan drug lords and insurgency leaders on criminal conspiracy charges ran afoul of the Obama team. Five years later, it remains buried under Trump. Josh Meyer Politico As Afghanistan edged ever closer to becoming a narco-state five years ago, a team of veteran U.S. officials in Kabul presented the Obama administration with a detailed plan to use U.S. courts to prosecute the… The plan, according to its authors, was both a way of halting the ... Read More »

British boy’s medical cannabis returned

London: The UK Home Office is returning a severely epileptic boy’s medicinal cannabis oil after confiscating it from his mother at customs. WAtoday PA Charlotte Caldwell tried to bring the medication into Heathrow Airport in a last-ditch effort to treat her 12-year-old son Billy, but it was removed by border officials. After a week of pleading with the Home Office, during which she accused a minister of likely signing the boy’s “death warrant”, the government has relented. Home Secretary Sajid Javid ... Read More »

Lebanon Is Protecting Hezbollah’s Cocaine Trade in Latin America

The country’s institutions are not a counterweight to Hezbollah, but its enablers. Emanuele Ottolenghi FP Days after the Trump administration withdrew from the Iran nuclear deal, Washington ramped up sanctions against Hezbollah as part of its offensive against Tehran and its proxies. Yet U.S. policy toward the Lebanese militant group continues to be incoherent. By flexing its muscles against Hezbollah while supporting Lebanese state institutions that it has heavily penetrated or fully controls, the White House ends up undermining its own pursuit of the… Lebanon ... Read More »

‘Not equal before the law’: Why regional drug addicts are often sent to jail, not rehab

A retired judge has backed calls for more drug rehabilitation centres in the bush, warning addicts in regional areas are too often thrown behind bars. Background Briefing – By Bronwyn Adcock ABC John Nicholson SC served as a New South Wales District Court judge for more than a decade and regularly presided over sittings in Dubbo, where drug-related crime is high. When sentencing offenders, Mr Nicholson told Background Briefing there were times he had no choice but to impose a jail ... Read More »

Crime stats: Victoria sees another big drop in crime

Police say forensic targeting of known criminals is helping to make some of Melbourne’s offending hot spots safer, as official figures show the annual crime rate down 9.5 per cent across the state, and some of the… Noel Towell & Craig Butt The Age The Crime Statistics Agency says the number of criminal incidents recorded by police in the year to March 31 this year was 380,150, down nearly 9 per cent from 416,925 incidents recorded in the… There were ... Read More »