Half a million doses of cocaine are being consumed in London on average each day – twice the amount of any other European city

London’s cocaine market is now worth an estimated £1bn a year after new tests revealed people in the capital are taking an average of 23kg of the Class A drug every day.

More than half a million doses of cocaine, with an estimated street value of £2.75m, are being consumed in London on average each day – twice the amount of any other European city, according to a study seen exclusively by Sky News.

Forensic scientists at King’s College London University looked at waste water in the capital and tested for benzoylecgonine (BE), the compound produced when the body breaks down cocaine.

Image:More than half a million doses of pure cocaine are consumed in London on average each day

They found that the average daily amount of pure cocaine being consumed in London was 23kg – more than Europe’s next three biggest cocaine-consuming cities combined; Barcelona (12.74kg), Amsterdam (4.62kg) and Berlin (4.62kg).

It means London’s annual pure cocaine use now equates to more than eight tonnes which has an estimated street value of more than £1bn.Advertisementhttps://b3a5136164a177af56d2567237c9a609.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-38/html/container.html?n=0

The tests also revealed Londoners are big weekday users of cocaine unlike other European cities.

Dr Leon Barron, forensic scientist at King’s College London, told Sky News that researchers found “sustained cocaine usage across the week” in the capital, with only “a slight rise at the weekend”.

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Image:London’s cocaine market is now worth an estimated £1bn a year

“That is in contrast to other cities where you see a very marked recreational use at the weekend, and so cocaine is an everyday drug in London,” he added.

London’s average daily amount of cocaine used (23kg) represents pure cocaine and does not include substances which the Class A drug is cut with – usually anaesthetics such as lidocaine and benzocaine.

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Of the two UK cities tested – London and Bristol – Bristol was recorded as having more users of cocaine per head of population, and came out highest per capita of the 75 other European cities examined.

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London’s consumption of cocaine doubled from 2011 to 2015 but has slightly reduced since then, suggesting its market may have saturated.

It may explain why dealers are seeking to expand their criminal operations to other towns and cities, in what has become known as County Lines.

Tony Saggers, former head of drugs threat at the National Crime Agency, said: “I would say London has got to the point of saturation.‘One line is never enough’: Confessions of cocaine addictsSky News was granted rare access to Cocaine Anonymous

“The demand has gone up, the price has stayed stable, people are able to lay their hands on it freely, readily… but I would say, yeah, the other cities are catching up.”

In Bristol, Sky News met hairdressers, bar staff, a teacher, medical workers and students who admitted using cocaine.

A bar owner, who did not want to be named, said the surge in drug use had caused her to increase her spending on security by £1,000 per week.

Published by technofiend1

Kazan- Kazan National Research Technical University Казанский национальный исследовательский технический университет имени А. Н. Туполева he graduated in Economics in 1982

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