Cost of meth drops as supply outstrips demand

JAKARTA, INDONESIA, DEC-04: Courier meth Tommy Lim (35) secured by The Board National Narcotic Indonesia Republic currently catching title couriers and narcotic type of Crytal Meth, Jakarta on December, 04,2015. Board National Narcotics Indonesia Republic managed to secure narcotics types of Crytal Meth from Malaysia as much as 161 kilograms and courier that will circulate in Jakarta ahead of the new year. (Dasril Roszandi) (Photo by Dasril Roszandi/NurPhoto) (Photo by NurPhoto/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
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It's official: meth is now easier to get than cannabis.

That line comes from a top secret police document leaked to Newshub, which also shows the number of people selling methamphetamine is rapidly growing because there's so much money to be made. In fact, the market is so flooded the price is falling, while the Government has scrapped the Prime Minster-led "War on P" strategy.

The document also says there's been a notable increase in heavily addicted P users conducting violent stand-overs and arming themselves with firearms in order to steal meth from more vulnerable suppliers.

And that's not the only crime it's driving. On average, one homicide a year is related to meth.

In just one month last year, meth was recorded as a factor in 65 crimes involving weapons, 32 involving firearms, 43 assaults, 11 domestic violence crimes, five sexual assaults and two kidnappings. All were increases on the same month in the previous year - with weapons- and firearms-related crimes approximately doubling.

Back in 2009, Prime Minister Sir John Key launched a war on P. The Government wanted to choke off supply and in turn push the price up.

Back then the price of a gram of meth was $800 to $1000. But besides a drop in 2011, the price stayed relatively stable at more than $800 through to 2015.

A leaked report shows last year there was a sharp drop down to $600.

Prime Minister Bill English won't be taking Sir John's project on. The annual Tackling Methamphetamine report that was due out in October hasn't been finished and won't be. It's been scrapped, and Mr English has passed responsibility to his deputy, Paula Bennett.

"It's absolutely a priority for this Government, but as we're seeing, it's one of a number of insidious drugs that are out there and in our systems," she says.

Newshub.

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