News, information and statistics about cocaine abuse and the trafficking of cocaine. Data about cocaine is collected from criminal justice public health programs, drug treatment centers, security agencies and other public information sources.

In 2012, there were 3 babies being born each day in England that were addicted to cocaine, heroin and other types of drugs.

1,129 babies were born with “neonatal withdrawal symptoms”, according to the National Health Service. The number of babies born addicted to drugs was 11 percent higher than the number born in 2008.

The babies are addicted to the drugs due to the mother abusing the drugs while pregnant. Within the first few hours of being born, the babies face withdrawal symptoms from the drugs, such as vomiting and diarrhea. The babies must be placed immediately in drug treatment programs.

Source:  Andrew Gregory, “Rise in babies born addicted to heroin and crack cocaine as numbers hit three a day,” Mirror, December 24, 2013.

(More United Kingdom security threats.)

36 percent of high school seniors in the United States stated that they smoked marijuana in 2013. Over 12 percent of eight graders also smoked marijuana during the year.

Nearly 60 percent of seniors stated that they did not view marijuana use as harmful, compared to 55 percent in 2012.

According to an annual survey by Monitoring the Future, other forms of drugs, alcohol and tobacco l use by high school students declined in 2013. 40 percent of seniors stated that they drank alcohol during the year, down from 53 percent in 1997. Les than 10 percent of seniors smoked cigarettes, the first time the number has ever dropped below 10 percent. Prescription drug abuse of the painkiller Vicodin is down by half from the number of student who were abusing it, and cocaine and heroin use by all students was at all time lows in 2013.

(How much does marijuana cost?)

Source:  Anahd O’Connor, “Increasing Marijuana Use in High School Is Reported,” New York Times, Well Blog, December 18, 2013.

The World Gold Council estimates that between 150 to 200 tonnes of gold was smuggled into India in 2013. Officially, there was also 900 tonnes of gold that was imported to the country during the year. ‘

Intelligence officials in India state that most of the gold originates in Dubai, with Singapore also becoming a key player. The gold is smuggled to Sri Lanka, where it is then transported into the country.

Customs officials have begun paying informants a higher reward for help in stooping gold smuggling than they pay illegal drug informants. An informant who provides information about gold smuggling can receive a reward up to $807 (50,000 Indian Rupees) for each kilogram of bullion seized. By comparison, a cocaine informant can receive up to $645 (40,000 Rupees) while a heroin informant receives up to $322 (20,000 Rupees) as a reward.

The actually smuggler who carries the gold into India is paid $161 (10,000 Rupees) per trip.

(More underground income and profits.)

Source:  A. Anathalakshmi and Siddesh Mayenkar, “Bullion smuggling outstrips narcotics to feed gold habit,” Reuters, December 4, 2013.


Synthetic drugs such as cocaine and methamphetamine seizures increased by over 250 percent in India between 2009 and 2012.

Security agents in India seized 12 kilograms of cocaine and 1,244 kilograms of ephedrine (used to make meth) in 2009. By 2012, the kilos of cocaine seized in India increased to 44, and ephedrine seizures rose to 4,393 kilos.

Seizures of the sedative Mandrax (Methaqualone) also increased during the 4 year time frame, from 5 kg in 2009 to 216 kg in 2012.

(Convert prices of grams of cocaine to kilograms.)

Seizures of marijuana dropped drastically during this time frame. 208,764 kg of ganja was seized in 2009, compared with 77,149 kg in 2012, a drop of 64 percent.

Mumbai has the largest market for cocaine in India, with the drug accounting for 82 percent of drug seized in 2012.

Source:  Deeptiman Tiwary, “Use of synthetic drugs on the rise in India,” Times of India, November 25, 2013.

In November 2013, United States House of Representatives member Trey Radel  plead guilty to buying cocaine from an undercover officer. According to court documents, the Congressman paid $260 for 3.5 grams of cocaine, which is commonly known as an eight ball, or 1/8th of an ounce.

The actual drug buy took place on October 28, 2013 in Washington DC.

According to figures reported to the United Nations, a gram of cocaine sells for between $8 to $300 in the United States.

(See world cocaine prices here.)

Source:  Athena Jones and Evan Perez, “Rep. Trey Radel to take leave of absence, enter drug treatment,” CNN, November 20, 2013.

A study released by the Government of Bolivia found that 58 percent of the coca that is cultivated in the country is used for traditional purposes.

The remaining 32 percent of coca is devoted to cocaine production.

In total, 25,300 hectares of coca was cultivated across Bolivia in 2012.

Bolivia is ranked third behind Peru and Colombia in terms of cocaine production worldwide. Over 40,000 people in the country depend on coca cultivation for income. The crop contributes to $332 Million to Bolivia’s economy.

(Cocaine prices by country.)

Source:  Associated Press, “Bolivia says most of its coca for traditional uses,” San Jose Mercury News, November 13, 2013.

5.1 percent of residents in Peru’s capital of Lima abused cocaine in 2013, according to a report by a drug monitoring organization. 8.9 percent of the city’s residents used marijuana.

Across the entire country, 2.4 percent of the population aged 12 to 65 abused cocaine in Peru, an increase of over 60 percent from the 1.5 percent who used cocaine in 2010. Marijuana use in Peru also increased during that time period, from 5.6 percent to 7.5 percent.

(Marijuana prices by country.)

Source:  Natalie Southwick, “Cocaine Use in Peru Increases 60% in 3 Years,” Insight Crime, November 7, 2013.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime estimated that over 200 tons of cocaine is transported across Central America. Grown in the South, the cocaine moves north through Guatemala on its way to markets in the United States and Europe. The value of the cocaine that is passed through Guatemala is estimated to be worth $6 Billion.

According to organized crime researchers at Insight Crime, smugglers in Guatemala earn between $600 Million to $800 Million a year moving the drugs across the country. These “transportistas”, as they are called, are responsible for getting the drugs through territory that they are responsible for. In addition of moving the cocaine, the haulers also participate in the money laundering of funds generated from the sales. Security officials in November 2013 seized $1.4 Million in cash from a single car.

(More profits and earnings from under the table activities.)

Source:  Charles Parkinson, “Seizure Highlights Guatemala’s Poor Record in Cash Smuggling,” Insight Crime, November 6, 2013.

In a study of global commercial truck drivers, nearly half of drivers tested postive to using alcohol when driving, and 30 percent used amphetamines to stay awake during long trips.

The study conducted by the Universidada Estadual de Londrina in Brazil found that the number of users varied widely by country. In Brazil, 91 percent of truck drivers stated that they drank alcohol while working, compared to 9 percent in Pakistan.

83 percent of truck drivers in Thailand tested positive for amphetamines, compared to 0.2 percent in Norway.

In the United States, 12.5 percent of commercial drivers tested positive for alcohol.

The Federal Highway Police in Brazil stated that marijuana, cocaine, heroin, amphetamines and LSD were all easily found at gas stations and rest stop locations. Brazil has the most traffic accidents in the world.

(More meth facts and abuse information.)

Source:  Kathyrn Doyle, “Drug use high among commercial truck drivers: study,” Reuters, October 25, 2013.

An investigation conducted by the Sydney Morning Herald found that bath salts are readily available for purchase on the Internet.

A popular bath salt called “Eight Ballz” costs $20 per gram with a minimum order of $200. Eight Ballz provides the user with “more strength and energy”. However, if the customer was looking for “something more like cocaine,” then the brand “a-PVP” is recommended, which costs $80 per gram with a minimum order of four grams.

(Price of cocaine worldwide.)

Payments for the bath salts are made through Western Union.

Source:  Tim Elliott, “Online synthetic cocaine selling for $80 a gram,” Sydney Morning Herald, October 21, 2013.