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Drug-Related Crime

Volume 405: debated on Monday 12 May 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate he has made of the cost of crimes committed as a result of drug addictions in the UK in each of the last five years. [111573]

[holding answer 8 May 2003]: Recorded crime figures do not record whether an offence has been committed as a consequence of an offenders drug habits. Therefore it is not possible to make a direct assessment of the cost of crimes committed as a result of drug addiction.

However, a recent study published by the Home Office provides estimates of the total economic costs of Class A drug use in 2000 in the range of £2.9 and £5.3 billion. These costs include those to the health service, courts, prisons and other parts of the criminal justice system. When social costs, such as the costs to the victims of drug-related crime, are added, the total rises to between £10.1 and £17.4 billion, with problematic drug users responsible for 99 per cent. of these costs.