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Alarm at results of study showing traces of cocaine on 100% of Dublin bank notes

9 January, 2007

Sinn Féin Justice Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD has welcomed the seizure of heroin worth more than €600,000 in Ballyfermot yesterday evening. However, Deputy Ó Snodaigh expressed alarm at revelations that 100% of Dublin bank notes, tested by researchers analysing the detection of illicit drugs, had traces of cocaine on them.

Deputy Ó Snodaigh said, "While I welcome the seizure of a massive quantity of heroin in my constituency it is clear, by the decrease in street value of drugs, that increased seizures are in fact a mere consequence of the increased prevalence of drugs in our society.

"Alarming results of a study released today show that 100% of Dublin bank notes tested in research had traces of cocaine on them. If that doesn't wake the Government up to the massive drugs crisis nothing will.

"The Government is in cloud cuckoo land when it comes to the drugs crisis in this state. Rather than admit to the problem and put adequate measures in place to deal with it they would rather play it down and pretend it's not happening. This is having a detrimental effect in many communities - the very same communities that were abandoned by the state in the nineties to fight the drugs crisis on their own at the height of the heroin epidemic. It seems the lessons of the nineties have not been learned as communities are once again abandoned to face another drugs crisis - this time a cocaine epidemic.

"The Government must end its denial of this crisis and put in place a series of measures to fight back. These must include the provision of increased resources for drug treatment centres who are now struggling to tackle cocaine on top of heroin, adequate resources for national and local drugs units and community policing to enable the Gardaí to more effectively tackle illegal drugs supply in partnership with communities. And also educational and health measures to address the demand for drugs and many of their negative impacts." ENDS

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