Drug crime presents a significant problem for law enforcement. Drug supply involves significant profit; a highly adaptive and responsive target group; the potential for violence; cash transactions; the potential for corruption; mutual consent; a sub-cultural vernacular; political pressure; secrecy; telecommunications; and low levels of reporting by ‘consumers’. Drug deals are a simple, rapid transaction, even where substantial quantities are involved, that can take place anywhere at any time – but will typically take place in public space. These difficulties are further complicated by the ambiguous public rejection but private consumption or acceptance of drugs for recreational use by large numbers of people. The nature of the illegal drug market requires extraordinary policing methods, including undercover operations.
Current Issues in Criminal Justice Vol. 19, Issue 1