Mon, Aug 06, 2012 - Page 3 News List

Mixed figures on drug abuse cases

By Loa Iok-sin  /  Staff reporter

Government data showed that while the number of cases involving first-degree controlled drugs such as heroin, morphine and cocaine has decreased, the number of cases involving the use or sale of third and fourth-degree controlled drugs — such as rohypnol and ketamine — saw a marked increase in the first half of this year.

According Ministry of the Interior figures, there have been more than 21,000 cases of violation of the Drug Abuse Prevention Act (毒品危害防制條例) involving 2,338kg of illegal drugs and 22,459 suspects from January to June this year.

Comparing this year’s figures to those of last year, in the same period of time, the ministry said the number of cases dropped by 4.36 percent while the amount of illegal drugs confiscated dropped by 3.65 percent, or 88.67kg.

“The continuous efforts by the government to fight illegal drugs have led to decrease of violations to the Drug Abuse Prevention Act,” the statement said. “It is especially apparent that the drug-related offenses involving class one drugs have been on the decline.”

However, class three and class four drug offen is increasing.

“Compared to the same period ... last year, there has been a 26.11 percent increase in the use of class three and class four drugs, such as ketamine and flunitrazepam,” the statement said, adding that class 3 and class 4 drug offenses have gone up from 632 cases to 797.

With 3,626 cases of drug offenses, New Taipei City (新北市) ranked the first, Greater Kaohsiung City followed with 2,931 offenses, while Taipei City comes in the third with 2,033 cases of drug offenses.

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