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Drug purity drops as seizures increase

Wednesday, July 1st, 2009 Drug purity drops as seizures increase

People using cocaine face an increased risk from the decreasing purity of the drug because of an increase in seizures and rising prices, according to the Serious Organised Crime Agency (SOCA).

The agency voiced their concerns as tests conducted by the UN revealed that a typical line of cocaine bought on Britain’s streets is just 5 per cent pure.

The drug is being cut with a cocktail of cutting agents including boric acid and worming powder, according to the head of SOCA.

Other chemicals found in seized cocaine were chemicals such as dental and veterinary anaesthetics. These mimic the effects of cocaine but are much cheaper.

This means that end users of the drug are getting lower quality cocaine than ever before and may be exposing themselves to dangerous combinations of chemicals in the process.

The head of SOCA, Sir Stephen Lander, said that the proportion of pure cocaine found by officers in some seizures was small compared with the average dilution. Previously, the typical purity of the drug bound for the UK was around 20 per cent.

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