The criminal expert laboratories of the State Drug Control Service should be equipped with the latest tools to find narcotics. Currently, regional drug police are able to identify only four types of drugs, reported Viktor Ivanov, director of Russia’s Federal Service for Drug Control.
1990: Marijuana and poppy straw accounted for over 90% of all drug seizures (49% and 42%, respectively). Concentrated opium and hashish were 0.2% and 3%, respectively, of the drugs and psychotropic substances seized. Heroin, cocaine and synthetic narcotics were practically absent.
1995: Drug seizures recorded: 89,499, including 22,268 of poppy straw, 24,375 of raw opium, 168 of morphine, 245 of heroin, 2,076 of other opiates, 953 of cocaine, 29,688 of marijuana, 4,465 of hashish, 1,268 of hashish oil, 474 of amphetamines and hallucinogens, 2,140 of other narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, and 1,379 of strong substances.
1996: Drug seizures recorded: 111,580, including 22,540 of poppy straw, 34,799 of raw opium, 148 of morphine, 1,035 of heroin, 2,935 of other opiates, 131 of cocaine, 35,039 of marijuana, 6,161 of hashish, 1,906 of hashish oil, 1,194 of amphetamines and hallucinogens, 2,410 of other narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, and 3,282 of strong substances.
1997: Drug seizures recorded: 178,419, including 21,835 of poppy straw, 65,679 of raw opium, 122 of morphine, 3,376 of heroin, 9,250 of other opiates, 353 of cocaine, 55,755 of marijuana, 11,767 of hashish, 4,215 of hashish oil, 1,204 of amphetamines and hallucinogens, 2,525 of other narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, 2,338 of strong substances, and 961 of precursors (substances used in the production, manufacture and processing of narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances and listed as narcotics).
1998: Drug seizures recorded: 182,943, including 16,549 of poppy straw, 61,855 of raw opium, 157 of morphine, 18,979 of heroin, 10,705 of other opiates, 184 of cocaine, 52,717 of marijuana, 12,359 of hashish, 4,339 of hashish oil, 872 of amphetamines and hallucinogens, 1,720 of other narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, 2,507 of strong substances, and 1,750 of precursors.
1999: Drug seizures recorded: 203,536, including 14,727 of poppy straw, 57,651 of raw opium, 122 of morphine, 54,508 of heroin, 5,843 of other opiates, 117 of cocaine, 46,711 of marijuana, 9,217 of hashish, 7,705 of hashish oil, 1,094 of amphetamines and hallucinogens, 2,865 of other narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances, 2,976 of strong substances, and 2,411 of precursors.
2001: Russian law enforcement agencies seized about 80 tons of drugs and psychotropic and strong substances.
Main seizures included: 24.5% of opium and other opiates, 8.7% of poppy straw, 19.4% of hemp, 35.9% of heroin, 0% of cocaine, 0.4% of amphetamines, and 11.1% of other narcotics.
2002: Russian law enforcement agencies seized more than 76 tons of narcotic drugs worth 2.7 billion rubles.
Russian customs foiled 1,068 drug-smuggling attempts. The total weight of drugs seized was about 9 tons, including more than 7 tons of marijuana, hashish, poppy straw, nearly 116 kg of opium, 146 kg of heroin, and 1.3 kg of cocaine. This amount is equivalent to over 200,845,000,000 conventional doses. Customs authorities also seized over 115 tons of chemicals used in the illegal production of drugs. In 2002, customs seized 100,116,000,000 conventional units (ampoules, pills, capsules and bottles) of medical preparations containing narcotic drugs and psychotropic and strong substances, weighing 1.67 tons.
2003: The Drug Control Service seized over 27 tons of drugs and psychotropic substances.
The transport police seized over 1.5 tons of drugs and psychotropic substances. Lieutenant General Vyacheslav Zakharenkov, head of the Interior Ministry’s Transport Security Department, said 14,500 drug-trafficking crimes were committed in transport for the year, or eight percent of all drug-related crimes registered in Russia.
2004 saw a slight increase in highly concentrated opiates seized by law enforcement agencies (from 39% in 2003 to 41% in 2004). As in 2003, heroin was involved in every third case, and opium in every tenth. The percent of cannabis-based drugs amounted to 46%.
There were also increases in the volume seized. In 2004, heroin rose to 3,897 kg, from 1,431 kg in 2003, while opium increased to 2,058 kg from 388 kg in 2003. In 2004, these two drugs accounted for 3% and 0.2%, respectively, of all drugs seized (in 2003, the figures were 1% and 3%, respectively).
The volume of synthetic drugs in the amphetamine range grew by 600% (from 23.6 kg in 2003 to 165.3 kg in 2004). Moscow and St. Petersburg led in the number and amount of amphetamine seizures.
The seizures reported in 2004 are evidence of uninterrupted and growing supplies of highly concentrated drugs (heroin and amphetamines) in Russia.
Even though total drug seizures dropped from 162,177 in 2003 to 135,072 in 2004, there was a significant growth in the overall amount of drugs seized. In 2004, law enforcement agencies seized 129,731 kg of drugs (from 54,352 kg in 2003). This time, marijuana led the field. In 2004, its seizures also increased (450%, or from 16,286 kg in 2003 to 89,653 kg in 2004).
2005: Russia’s law enforcement agencies and secret services seized 139 tons of drugs.
2006: In instituted proceedings, drug control bodies seized 92,529 kg of drugs and psychotropic and strong substances.
There was a growth in the proportion of synthetic drugs, above all, 3-methylphentanyl (so-called “white Chinese”), whose average dose is two ten-thousandths of a gram. In 2006, the Federal Drug Control Service hauled in 27 kg of 3-methylphentanyl, or only 0.1% of the total seized. This quantity, however, could yield 1,330,000,000 average one-time doses. “White Chinese” is thousands of times more destructive than heroin.
2007: Drug control bodies seized 24.7 tons of drugs. All in all, 3 tons of heroin was seized in the country during the year, including 1.7 tons by drug control authorities, or the equivalent of 16.5 million average one-time doses.
2008: In instituted proceedings, 38 tons of drugs, psychotropic substances and their precursors were seized, including 24.5 tons (of which over 3.5 tons of heroin) by drug control bodies. That was 50% more than in 2007. Nearly 10 kg of heroin, corresponding to two million doses, was seized daily.
2009: 45 tons of drugs were seized in Russia, or 33% more than in the previous year. According to Viktor Ivanov, director of the Federal Service for Drug Control, 20,000 hectares of wild narcotic-containing plantations were destroyed in Russia, preventing the production of 170 tons of marijuana.
In 2009, Russia closed 6,414 drug houses, 37 underground chemical drug laboratories, and 3,497 primitive drug facilities.
In January 2010, according to Vladimir Kalanda, deputy director of the Federal Service for Drug Control, the drug police seized over a ton of smoking blends, which were considered a narcotic from January 22. He recalled that the government included a number of smoking blends, such as “Hawaiian Rose” and “Diviner’s Sage,” in the list of narcotic drugs. He said that smoking blends make up 3% of the drug market.
This reference is based on RIA Novosti and open source materials.