Drug crime in Germany has continued to rise for the ninth year in a row. The largest increase can be observed in connection with the “white poison”.
In the past year, a total of 359,747 drug offenses were registered, 2.6 percent more than the year before, according to the situation report published in Berlin on Tuesday by the Federal Criminal Police (BKA) on drug crime. This has increased the number of crimes for the ninth year in a row. Cocaine or so-called psychoactive substances are particularly problematic.
By far the largest increase in crime has been recorded in connection with cocaine. The number of registered criminal offenses increased by more than 12 percent compared to the previous year to 20,107 cases. In addition, 31 illegal laboratories for the production of synthetic drugs were excavated in Germany in 2019. This equates to an increase of approximately 63 percent over the previous year. 19 laboratories were discovered in 2018.
The internet as a sales channel consolidated
According to the BKA, the drug trade on the internet has established itself worldwide as a fixed sales channel. So-called new psychoactive substances are also almost exclusively sold online. Last year, the BKA registered 458 human trafficking offenses related to such synthetic drugs, about 56 percent more than the year before. Both the production and the trade in these materials are organized more and more professionally.
BKA chairman Holger Münch emphasized that the internet is “not a legal vacuum”. “Despite the high level of anonymity on the Internet, it is also possible for law enforcement agencies to identify suspects and investigate illegal trade routes and criminal offenses,” explains Münch. He was referring to the German online drug platform “Chemical Revolution”, which was shut down by security authorities about a year ago. Several suspected operators of online trading on Darknet are currently being taken to court.
“Drug crime is not trivial, it causes immeasurable suffering, brutal violence and is the basis for many other organized crime crimes,” warned federal drug commissioner Daniela Ludwig (CSU). The increasing number of drug crimes is “unacceptable”.