PM: Govt making progress in war on P

A large piece of crystal methamphetamine that police seized from a P lab bust. Photo / Greg Bowker
A large piece of crystal methamphetamine that police seized from a P lab bust. Photo / Greg Bowker

The Government's campaign against methamphetamine is getting results, with lab busts and seizures up, and the street price of the drug climbing gradually, says Prime Minister John Key.

Released today, the Tackling Methamphetamine progress report says the average price of a "point" of pure methamphetamine, or P, has remained since 2006 at $100, with the price of a gram having risen from $600 in 2006 to $723 now.

The war on P involves a range of government departments, spearheaded by police and the Customs Department, and Mr Key said the report showed continued crack-downs were producing high levels of seizures of methamphetamine and the pseudoephedrine used to make it.

He said breaking supply chains was a big challenge, but border seizures of illegal pseudoephedrine imports this year (821kg) was on track to rival last year's record 1.2 tonnes. The amount seized so far this year was enough to make up to 220kg of methamphetamine, at a value of $220 million.

Over 25kg of methamphetamine, with a street value of about $25m, had been seized so far this year, which was more than the 20kg seized last year.

"The number of clan lab busts is up on last year and all new residential treatment beds are in place six months ahead of schedule," Mr Key said.

He said the dangers of P remained apparent, and people went to extreme lengths to import its ingredients, but those involved in the trade would be finding the going difficult.

"I think we are actually making progress, which is why prices have stayed at those high levels, and why the seizure rate is much higher."

"The comprehensive nature of the plan is delivering results".

Mr Key said the impacts of the Criminal Proceeds Recovery Act, brought into effect last December, were also being felt, and that $48m worth of assets believed to have been obtained through criminal activities had been identified since then.

About $46m of that was linked to drug offending - $30m of which was linked to methamphetamine.

Mr Key said $29.7m worth of those assets had been seized and were being held by authorities.

- NZPA

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