More children involved in drug cases

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Authorities are concerned over a dramatic increase in hard drugs seized in police raids, such as cocaine, and children involved in drug cases.

According to a report compiled by the police’s Drug Law Enforcement Unit (YKAN), some 60 minors aged between 14 and 18 were involved either as users falling prey to drug dealers or caught pushing drugs.

The report records a whopping 5,714% increase in the confiscation of cocaine in the first four months of the year compared to 2021.

Between January and April 2021, authorities confiscated just 149 grams of the hard drug, while in the same period this year, they confiscated 8.664 kilos.

There was an 84% increase in cannabis confiscated, while YKAN officers have seized 1.65 kg of an extremely hallucinogenic drug called Mykonos sleeping pills.

In comments to Phileleftheros daily, the head of YKAN, Michalis Katsounotos, said the increase in drugs confiscated is also attributable to the police clamp down on drug trafficking.

“We have improved how we evaluate and analyse intel while tightening checks at the Republic’s entry points,” said Katsounotos.

He noted the force has been able to deliver significant blows to traffickers.

“In just six hours, on Monday, officers apprehended six suspects involved in three different cases while confiscating 8.5 kg of cannabis and 2.5 kg of cocaine.”

Katsounotos said police would continue to work closely with the Cyprus National Addictions Authority, evaluating new data and ready to readjust the country’s strategic plan for fighting drug trafficking.