From Iceland — Narcotics Market Getting Rougher: Increase In Prices, Prostitution And Crime

Narcotics Market Getting Rougher: Increase In Prices, Prostitution And Crime

Published July 26, 2017

Elías Þórsson
Photo by
Psychonaught / Wikicommons

According to figures from SÁÁ, the National Centre of Addiction Medicine, the underground world of narcotics, pushers and drug dealing is increasingly getting more brutal.

Recently, a new medicine database was introduced, which allows doctors to keep  a closer eye of the number of prescriptions handed out to each patient. This has severely decreased the chance of going from doctor to doctor to get more prescription.

The side effect of this has been an explosion in prices, for instance, SÁÁ says that the price for Contalgin, which have for the past decade been stable at 4,000 króna have rocketed up to 10,000 króna today. The price for some morphine based drugs has shot up 100% recently.

Drug related prostitution on the rise

Speaking to Svala Jóhannesdóttir, project manager for Frú Ragnheiður, which helps users turn to less harmful substances, said that increasingly users are turning to prostitution to finance their addiction.

“The impact on the most vulnerable has been very serious,” said Svala. “The consequences are that they need to do much more to finance their use and usually this is achieved through undesirable means. There is a lot of prostitution going on and women are being abused. There is theft and break-ins.”

Heroin possibly on its way to Iceland

According to Svala, her organisation receives around 300 visits a months from users, and she is worried that the importing of harder drugs might follow as a consequence of the spike in prices.

“We have received reports that heroin is possible on its way to the country and we are very worried about that development,” she said. “Because heroin is a street drug then there is no way of knowing what it includes. Originally this is an opioid, but drug dealers add all sorts of stuff into it to increase their batch. So it is impossible for users to know both the strength of the substance of what is in it.”

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