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Drug seizures a frightening statistic -- Ó Snodaigh

8 January, 2007

Sinn Féin's Justice spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has described the record heroin seizures by the Gardaí as a 'frightening statistic'. While welcoming the Gardaí's success, he pointed out that this indicates heroin is as widely available as ever. He called on the Government to accept it's drugs strategy is failing and implement policies aimed at targeting the causes of drug abuse, instead of indulging in 'macho posturing'.

The Dublin South-Central TD said: "The value of heroin seized last year by the Gardaí was four times the figure seized in 2005. While drugs seizures and the work of the Gardaí in this regard must be welcomed, it is a truly frightening statistic as international practice estimates that only 10% of illicit drugs are ever seized.

"The fact that even the record high seizures of heroin did not significantly impact on the price of drugs on the ground clearly demonstrates the reality that heroin is more widely available than ever.

"The Government must start to realise that it's strategy for dealing with drugs in this state has failed. Macho posturing on mandatory sentencing and attacks on the judiciary might make for good headlines in the right-wing press, but they do little to tackle the increasing problem of drug abuse.

"A long-term, strategy is needed that views cracking down on the drugs gangs as merely one part of an holistic approach to tackling drug abuse in this state. It must also focus on the deprivation, inequality and alienation from the state that provides those gangs with the customers they exploit with such devastating effects."


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