P Drug takes over Marijuana industry

By Mānia Clarke-Mamanu

The increasing demand for P is making the drug easier to get. That is the response from Patua Te Ngāngara program facilitator Shane White to the annual Massey University study, which says that it takes an hour or less to purchase methamphetamine in Christchurch and Auckland. 

For 12 years Shane White has been helping users of P to stop and their families. He's not at all surprised by the latest Illicit Drugs Monitoring Systems study that it's easier to buy methamphetamine in Christchurch and Auckland.

Kaiwhakahaere, Patua Te Ngangara facilitator Shane White says, “Auckland is the first place the drug is made. Then it has moved to Christchurch because of the influx of tradespeople who have moved there. Also, P users have been separated from their support systems, because of the earthquake, and so there's been an influx of wealthy outsiders.”

Police also say they are seeing an increase in the use of P in both NZ and world-wide. Shane says it's becoming the popular drug.

White says, “Manufacturing P is easier than growing cannabis. It's easier to purchase, though it's expensive. During the Christmas holiday period, we heard that there are fewer marijuana plantations. That's because people are turning to methamphetamine and synthetic cannabis.”

According to the IDMS study, 72% of drug users report increased buying and selling drugs via social media and "dark net" encrypted websites.

The police say, dark-nets sites, as identified by the survey, have been a focus for some time now. Police say they are also aware New Zealanders have been purchasing drugs from these sites.

Police are aware of the risks posed by dark net sites and its Cyber Crime Unit is adapting strategies and tactics to address them.