A STATE-WIDE campaign aimed at mobilising members of the public in the fight against ‘ice’ was launched in the Blacktown Local Area Command (LAC) on Monday, September 19.
The ‘Dob in a Dealer’ campaign has been funded by the Commonwealth government and is taking place in states and territories across Australia.
In NSW, the campaign has been hosted within 21 LACs across the state, with Blacktown the final command to host the campaign that began in March this year.
It will run in Blacktown LAC for two weeks, during which police and Crime Stoppers will conduct community-engagement activities designed to educate the public on the dangers of illicit drugs and how they can show their support for the campaign.
These will also highlight the important role members of the public have in helping police shut down drug-manufacturing syndicates and arrest drug suppliers.
During the campaign, residents across Blacktown LAC will be urged to contact Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or via the online portal, where they can report drug-dealing activities anonymously.
Data from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research (BOCSAR) has consistently demonstrated the significant impact ‘ice’ is having on our communities.
In the 36 months to September 2015, arrests for amphetamine possession soared by 75.3 per cent across NSW (up from 5,063 in 2013 to 8,876 in 2015).
Over the same time period, arrests for dealing/trafficking amphetamines in NSW increased 34 per cent (from 1,567 in 2013 to 2,099 in 2015).
There has also been a steady increase in the number of clandestine drug laboratories detected by police in NSW.
In 2008 there were 55; by last year this had almost doubled, with 106 laboratories dismantled.
“Police cannot be on every street corner, which is why we need to work with the community to identify the unscrupulous criminals who are manufacturing and distributing prohibited drugs like ‘ice’ within our neighbourhoods."
The ‘Dob in a Dealer’ campaign will target criminals who are manufacturing and supplying ‘ice’, and even one phone call to Crime Stoppers can have an enormous impact.
In September 2012, a single, anonymous call to Crime Stoppers led to State Crime Command’s Asian Crime Squad – now known as the Organised Crime Squad – seizing 585 kilograms of ‘ice’ in February 2013.
Blacktown Local Area Commander, Detective Superintendent Gary Merryweather said Dob in a Dealer was about acknowledging that illegal drugs were a serious issue within the community and what could police could do to address it.
“Police cannot be on every street corner, which is why we need to work with the community to identify the unscrupulous criminals who are manufacturing and distributing prohibited drugs like ‘ice’ within our neighbourhoods,” he said.
“The fact is drugs like ‘ice’ do not discriminate, they can affect people from both disadvantaged and affluent social backgrounds and its impact spans the entire geography of this state.
“It is known to ravage people’s lives and can lead to the disruption of careers, family breakdown and dysfunction, and can isolate users from their family, friends and community,” Det Supt Merryweather said.
“If you see something you’re concerned about, please let us know.
“Your information could help us smash an ‘ice’ supply syndicate and directly impact on the amount of ‘ice’ circulating in our community.
“While this drug can be devastating, it’s also important to remember there is help available and your call might be the beginning of that help for someone.”
If you think you have information about someone in your community who is manufacturing or supplying drugs, call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 for a confidential conversation or report securely online at www.crimestoppers.com.au
Crime Stoppers is focused on gathering information to stop the supply and manufacture of drugs.
If you or someone you know is affected by drug use or addiction, please contact support services such as the Alcohol and Drug Information Service on (02) 9361 8000.