Over 25,000 suspects arrested in past year tested positive for Class A drugs

More than half of all arrested suspects tested for Class A drugs last year were found to be under the influence of cocaine or heroin.

Writing in The Daily Telegraph, Home Secretary Suella Braverman KC MP said the figure demonstrated a clear connection between illegal drug use and other criminality.

In April, setting out her “ethos for common sense policing”, Mrs Braverman urged officers to focus on fighting serious crime such as violence, drugs and antisocial behaviour, rather than pursuing wokery.

Law enforcement

The Home Secretary explained that of the 50,000 or more tests for cocaine and opiates “conducted on suspects arrested in the past year”, more than half “came back positive”.

As a result, she pledged to expand police powers “to test for specified Class B drugs, including cannabis and ketamine”.

“This testing is crucial for preventing further crime,” she argued, “as offenders are diverted towards life-changing intervention and treatment services”.

Mrs Braverman concluded: “The British people have no time for the sob stories of those committing crimes, and nor do I. Anyone who breaks the law should feel its full force.”


Recent research suggests that cocaine use has risen significantly in some major UK cities.

Graeme Biggar, Director General of the National Crime Agency, said that waste water analysis in cities such as London and Manchester was now an effective determinant of the quantity and type of drugs being consumed.

Biggar warned: “Illegal drug use remains the major driver of serious and organised crime, and is linked to firearms, serious violence, modern slavery, burglary and robbery, and money laundering.”

He added: “Drugs are now sold on the darkweb as well as the street corner. And they kill. Over 4,500 people died from drug misuse in 2021 (our last full year of data).”

‘No safe way’

In August, the Government rejected a call by MPs to open so called safe consumption facilities for drug users across the UK.

Responding to a Home Affairs Committee report which recommended piloting heroin shooting galleries, the Government said: “There is no safe way to take illegal drugs”.

The Committee specifically recommended legislation to allow a ‘drug consumption room’ to operate in Glasgow, and said that “if the UK Government is unwilling to support this, the power to establish a pilot be devolved to the Scottish Government”.

But a Home Office spokesperson said that illegal drugs “devastate lives, ruin families and damage communities” and the Government “have no plans to consider this”.

Also see:


Republic of Ireland in grip of ‘cocaine epidemic’

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