Synthetic drugs a growing problem: minister

Taipei Times
Date: Jun 01, 2019
By: Jason Pan  /  Staff reporter

Minister of Justice Tsai Ching-hsiang (蔡清祥) yesterday warned about increasing

Bags containing 400kg of amphetamine imported from Vietnam hidden inside tea leaves are displayed at a news conference held by the Criminal Investigation Bureau in Taipei yesterday.
Photo: Chiu Chun-fu, Taipei Times

consumption of new forms of synthetic drugs that has led to a host of health and social problems, including an upsurge of deaths over the past few years.

“Many young people have died because of these new synthetic drugs. It has become an urgent social problem, requiring an increase in preventive measures and efforts to crack down,” Tsai said in a keynote address at a conference in Taipei co-organized with the Ministry of Education.

Deaths attributed to use of new synthetic drugs averaged about 10 cases up until 2011, then escalated to 100 deaths in 2017, when the government began implementing programs to combat illegal drugs, which reduced such fatalities to 45 last year, he said.

Citing data from the Ministry of Justice’s Institute of Forensic Medicine, Tsai said that in 2011, there was an average of 1.9 varieties of the drugs in fatalities, which rose to an average of 4.6 varieties over the past few years, with 10 different synthetic drugs found in one body last year.    [FULL  STORY]

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