A special commission has been told amphetamine possession and dealing spiked 250 per cent in the seven years to 2016.
7 May 2019 - 3:00 PM  UPDATED 7 May 2019 - 3:00 PM

Amphetamine possession and dealing rose 250 per cent in NSW between 2009 and 2016, a special commission into ice has heard.

The inquiry, set up by the NSW government in November 2018, is examining the use and impact of methamphetamines and other illicit stimulants such as MDMA.

Counsel assisting, Sally Dowling SC, opened the hearing in Sydney on Tuesday.

Figures from the Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research submitted by acting executive director Jackie Fitzgerald show possession and dealing of amphetamines all rose 250 per cent in the seven years to 2016.

Between 2011 and 2018, Ecstasy possession increased by 131 per cent and Ecstasy dealing increased by 70 per cent, the figures show.

Some 73 per cent of people found guilty of amphetamine possession in 2018 had a prior conviction in the past five years with 20 per cent having a prior conviction for domestic violence and 24 per cent having previously served a prison sentence.

When the hearing opened last month, Counsel assisting, Sally Dowling SC, said that Aboriginal communities have twice the rate of amphetamine use as the broader community,

"Chronic use of crystal methamphetamine can cause the collapse of the user's health,” she said.

"It is sometimes associated with amphetamine-induced psychosis that, in extreme cases, may manifest in paranoia and violence and sometimes - tragically - in suicidal behaviour."


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