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Scotland’s most serious criminals are being identified and made to pay for the damage they are causing our communities, Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill said today

Mr MacAskill was speaking following the publication of new figures that show there were 27,319 drug seizures by Scottish police forces in 2010/11 – almost a quarter of which involved a class A drug.

A multi-agency approach to cracking down on drug dealing is set out in the Serious Organised Crime Strategy, launched in 2010.

Mr MacAskill said:

Drug dealing is a serious and sophisticated criminal enterprise that damages our communities and hurts our country in terms of public safety, the economy, and jobs.

“Combating serious organised crime – including disrupting the supply of drugs in Scotland –  and tackling organised crime groups is a top priority for the Scottish Government, police and law enforcement organisations, as set out in our Serious Organised Crime Strategy.

“These figures today show that police are taking a tough approach and hitting dealers where it hurts. I congratulate every officer involved in helping to get these drugs off our streets and encourage them to continue their good work in our communities. It underlines that there is no place for drug dealing in today’s society.

“From a drugs treatment perspective, this Government is working hard to tackle Scotland’s legacy of drugs misuse and we are firmly moving in the right direction. Our national drugs strategy, The Road to Recovery, has been reinforced with investing record funding for drug treatment – an increase of over 20 per cent since 2006/07 – to ensure help is there for people who want it. People are continuing to enter treatment, and are getting the help they need to support their recovery more quickly.

“However, it is vital we do all we can to stop drugs getting into our communities in the first place, and continue to come down hard on the dealers peddling them.”

Deputy Chief Constable Gordon Meldrum, Director General of the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency (SCDEA) and ACPOS lead on drugs, said:
“Taking dealers and the drugs off the street remain important elements of our overall approach to tackling organised crime and protecting vulnerable people in our society. Drugs continue to have a devastating impact on the communities of Scotland and Scottish policing remains relentless in its fight against the drug dealers and the harm that they cause.

Drug dealing continues to be the bread and butter business of serious organised crime groups and disrupting this global business is a top priority for us. In addition to the excellent work carried out by Scottish police at home, we are increasingly seizing high-purity drugs with law enforcement partners overseas before they reach Scotland’s streets.”

Written by Scott Buckler
Tuesday, 24 April 2012 12:12

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