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People In The UK Use More Cocaine Than Anywhere Else In Europe

People In The UK Use More Cocaine Than Anywhere Else In Europe

The United Kingdom has been described as Europe's 'biggest user of of powder cocaine', with Brits using 300 percent more cocaine in the past decade than they did before, according to statistics from the National Crime Agency.

In case you're looking for more shocking stats, that means that people from the United Kingdom took 115 tons of cocaine just last year.

That's a lot of powder to be using, and it's worth a whole load of illegal money, too.

The National Crime Agency said that much of the stuff that is ending up on streets over here is coming into the country via other European countries like Spain, Belgium, and The Netherlands.

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Lawrence Gibbons, the head of drugs threat at the NCA, also reflected upon the change in people using the drugs amongst Britons over the past few decades.

He told The Times: "The UK is the biggest user of powder cocaine in Europe.

"A lot of the consignments we see coming into Europe - through Spain, Belgium or the Netherlands mainly - a significant proportion is destined for the UK.

"In the 1980s it was seen as a middle-class drug, a commodity for bankers and professionals. That's no longer the case, it doesn't distinguish any more.

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"You cannot stop the demand through law enforcement. The answer cannot be just to arrest everyone."

Police seized a record 12 tons of cocaine in Southampton in 2011. Credit: PA
Police seized a record 12 tons of cocaine in Southampton in 2011. Credit: PA

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He continued: "There has to be education and treatment - people need to understand the harm that is done to families, loved ones, children.

"And users should learn about the reality of a trade that is run by criminal gangs who use guns, violence, trafficking and debt bondage."

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Last year, a study by Kings College London discovered that there was more cocaine consumed in London than Barcelona, Amsterdam, and Berlin combined.

Researchers took waste water from all of those cities and tested it for benzoylecgonine, the compound created when the body processes cocaine.

They found that Londoners collectively consumed 23kg of cocaine per day, compared with 12.74kg in Barcelona, 4.62kg in Amsterdam - perhaps surprisingly - and 4.62kg in Berlin.

Dr Leon Barron, a Kings College forensic scientist, also told Sky News that cocaine is an 'everyday drug' in the UK, as the study found only a 'slight rise at the weekend'.

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Credit: PA
Credit: PA

He explained: "That is in contrast to other cities where you see a very marked recreational use at the weekend, and so cocaine is an everyday drug in London."

This figure also only accounts for pure cocaine, not any of the substances - varied and terrifying - that the drugs are cut with before being sold to street users.

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: UK News, Europe, Drugs

Tom Wood

Tom Wood is a LADbible journalist and Twin Peaks enthusiast. Despite having a career in football cut short by a chronic lack of talent, he managed to obtain degrees from both the University of London and Salford. According to his French teacher, at the weekends he mostly likes to play football and go to the park with his brother. Contact Tom on [email protected]