ALMATY, Republic of Kazakhstan – May 2019: According to the Express Analysis Reports and Weekly Reports of CARICC (Central Asian Regional Information and Coordination Centre for Combating Illicit Trafficking of Narcotic Drugs Psychotropic Substances and Their Precursors), 39.5 kilograms of mephedrone and its derivates have been seized in the Russian Federation in the first months of 2019.
The most recent seizure case took place in May in the Republic of Mari El, when police officers stopped a car and found 900 grams of mephedrone in the personal belongings of the passenger. Further investigations related to this seizure led to the dismantling of a clandestine laboratory manufacturing synthetic drugs, which was located in the garage of the suspect.
Mephedrone counts to the group of synthetic cathinones and acts predominantly as a central nervous system stimulant, mimicking the effects of traditional drugs such as cocaine, amphetamine, methamphetamine and ecstasy. The substance was placed under Schedule II of the 1971 Convention on Psychotropic Substances in 2015.
For further information please see:
Official statement of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation to the Seizure Case of May
May 2019 – Mexico: Seizures of more than 26 kilograms, 42,000 tablets and 90 injectable ampoules of fentanyl in 2019
MEXICO CITY, Mexico – May 2019: Between 1st of January and 15th of April 2019, the Government of Mexico reported 16 cases of fentanyl detections, with more than 42,000 tablets, 90 injectable ampoules and 26 kilograms of fentanyl seized. In many cases, the packages were sent via courier companies. Three types of shipment routes were reported: shipments from other countries to Mexico often containing untabletted fentanyl, national mail shipments within Mexico containing various forms of presentation of fentanyl, and shipments from Mexico to USA with fentanyl in tablet form.
A recent seizure was conducted on the 15th of April 2019 by the Anti-Drug Division of the Federal Police in coordination with the personnel of the Tax Administration System at the International Airport of Mexico City. 0.89 kilogram of fentanyl was detected in two cardboard boxes with the destination to the municipality of Ecatepec, State of Mexico, and of Culiacan, Sinaloa.
Fentanyl and its analogues are potent synthetic opioids, which are liable to abuse and have been associated with an increasing number of deaths, particularly in North America.
Source: Secretariat of Security and Citizen Protection.
For further information please see:
- Various communications from the Government of Mexico accessed via search function for ‘fentanilo’
- Communication from the Ministry of Security and Citizen Protection
- Global Smart Update 17 - Fentanyl and its analogues – 50 years on
- Global SMART Update Vol. 21 - Understanding the global opioid crisis
April 2019 – The Netherlands: IV International Conference on NPS presents new challenges and innovative solutions
MAASTRICHT, The Netherlands – April 2019: The sixth International Conference on NPS was held in Maastricht from 8 to 9 April 2019, with the aim to increase knowledge on NPS, strengthen the evidence base and promote innovative strategies to protect public health and foster global collaboration. 250 participants from multidisciplinary fields from 29 countries attended the conference. The sessions included latest trends in NPS use, settings, experiences and trends; detection, identification and characterization; pharmacology and toxicology; prevention, harm reduction, treatment and clinical management; performance- and image-enhancing drugs; early-warning and toxicovigilance; monitoring new psychoactive substances; and policy and legislation. The conference was jointly organized by the UNODC, EMCDDA, WADA, the University of Hertfordshire and the University of Maastricht.
UNODC’s contribution to the conference included a presentation that provided an overview on the latest global trends of the NPS market, highlighting that periods of rapid emergence of substances of abuse have been often recorded in the long history of international drug control. The presentation looked at events behind the scenes and highlighted lessons learnt from the delineation of policy responses for NPS and traditional drugs; the creation of niche markets and the shift to vulnerable populations. It concluded by presenting best practices such as the Toolkit on Synthetic drugs which might aid in addressing possible future cycles of new substance emergence.