Further Opinion – We are a long way from an informed debate on drugs | The Independent – John Gelmini

Alf, I’d like to expand upon my earlier posting. I know a little about this, and the Home Office and the Department of Health both underestimate the number of heroin and cocaine addicts and by so doing underestimate, for whatever reason, the number of drug rehabilitation units required. In my own local NHS Trust, the problem has become so acute that G4S currently employed on hospital cleaning now has to supply guards to the hospital to stop addicts stealing drugs, meant for sick people who they then sell on to pay for what is typically a £400 GBP a day drug habit.

What happens is that the addicts present themselves to A&E, as either having fallen or injured themselves, and then after a toilet break, seek to break into the drug stores.

Successive governments have decided that the cost of getting heroin addiction below 250,000 is prohibitive, so no more resources are put in. This is not me speculating but came directly from a middle-ranking civil servant, speaking to me in 2006, in the capacity of someone who had written books on the subject and was an expert at drug rehabilitation in her role advising Ministers.

The Port of Felixstowe has not been subjected to a major drugs bust in 30 years and the acting Chief Constable of Suffolk and the Head of the National Crime Agency speaking to Suffolk Chamber of Commerce, when I visited one of their events in Bury St Edmunds were unable to say that they could deploy more resources to the port to prevent thefts from lorries or the ingress of trafficked people and drugs.

The Head of the National Crime Agency said that there were 4,500 major criminal gangs that they were tracking in an effort to “Deter them and drive them away whilst disrupting their activities”. The words “arrest”, “bring to trial”, build watertight cases”, “put them behind bars having sought a conviction and secured it” were not used once, either by this man or the Deputy Chief Constable of Suffolk.

The DEA in America spend over $1.5 billion USD a year trying to interdict drugs but only manage to seize 10% of the drugs that pour in from outside via Mexico, Columbia and other places. The Mexican drug cartels arranged for drug money to be put into holdalls small enough to fit into bank teller windows and HSBC was fined by the authorities in America to the tune of $1.5 billion USD for allowing this to go on and for drug money to enter the American banking system. In the UK the Money Laundering regulations have never been used as forcefully and not one banker has actually been convicted of anything.

No major criminal gang has access to cargo ships or planes and heroin has to come overland from Afghanistan through Turkey in a sealed lorry marked TIR. Eventually those lorries have to go by sea and into our ports. Enforcement must therefore start with X-Raying or stopping and searching lorries at the entrance to the A14 in the case of Felixstowe or the A13 in the case of Tilbury. This means enough policemen deployed at these points to effect the necessary searches. Chief Constables should at least be asked to explain to a House of Commons Select Committee what they are doing and why the level of drug seizures is so low; it cannot be right that they complain about lack of resources and maintain they are doing the best they can.

Your point about defraying costs of rehabilitation and the mayhem caused by drug addicts I take on board. In fact “indentured servitude” exists within the prison system already since the mid 1990s under a programme called “Factories within Fences” started by Tony Blair. Prisoners are made to make clothing and do useful work and presumably the programme could be rapidly expanded with purpose built systems constructed in Germany in modular form and then assembled underground or in remote Hebridean locations.


John Gelmini

Opinion – Boris Johnson dismisses fears that trade will be hit by Brexit | Daily Mail Online – John Gelmini

Español: Aduana en el aeropuerto de Stansted.

Español: Aduana en el aeropuerto de Stansted. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The terms of an agreement for Turkey to join the EU have been discussed but not yet agreed publicly.

That said Erdogan expects £3 billion GBP a year for the deal already done on migrants and he expects the EU to make Turkey a full member in 5 years (2021).

In the event of delays by Germany vis-a-vis Turkish membership, Erdogan has said that he will turn on the “floodgates”, by which he means many more economic migrants will be unleashed to go to Europe. When he was offered half the amount of money he wanted for the deal on migration he concentrated the minds of Angela Merkel, David Cameron and Donald Tusk by saying publicly, “Do you take us for fools, it is costing us up to £6 billion GBP a year to take the number of refugees we have already? Of course, the £6 billion GBP figure was an exaggeration but the wily Erdogan got the figure he wanted and made fools out of Merkel, Cameron and Tusk who between them and the rest of the EU stumped up the first £3 billion GBP.

Dr Alf is right in this piece from the Daily Mail to point out that Turkey is not yet a member of the EU; there is however a clear direction of travel in that David Cameron and the Americans have each been pushing very hard for EU enlargement right up to the Russian border despite Merkel’s preference for letting Turkey become an EU member and splitting the Ukraine into two spheres, one Russian and the other aligned with the EU.

Current forward deployments of American military hardware and special forces in all the countries to the West of the Ukraine and help provided to the Ukrainian military are being increased for the purpose of driving the EU border eastwards not just protecting Ukraine’s sovereignty.

Turks can already work in Germany and Syrian refugees and economic migrants already allowed into Turkey can allegedly already access bogus documentation and UK NI numbers from the 19 million spare numbers that are allegedly available in pubs, rogue religious establishments and from people smugglers.

Turkish border guards can and are being bribed to let people go for trivial sums so the prospect for Europe and Britain is more Turks and more migrants of all kinds. The UK is possibly the weakest link in the border defences of Europe since we have no E-Borders programme to count people in and out, inadequate passport checks (only 88% at airports) and practically none at bus and ferry terminals. Our UK coastline remains unprotected because our single coastal protection vessel was scrapped in 2012 and now we learn that not one of our maritime patrol vessels is available because they have all been sent to Calais. Last year nearly 700,000 people were issued with NI numbers but officially the ONS figures showed that 265,000 migrants had arrived.The difference could not have been made up by legal migration or school leavers since the time of year was wrong and the official ONS figures do not take the 7 million illegal immigrants already here into account. Since the time of the late Enoch Powell the Home Office has been allegedly fiddling immigration and crime figures and the ONS, although well meaning and basically honest in its approach to number crunching ends up underestimating what is going on because they are fed incorrect and incomplete data as evidenced by their refusal, couched in very careful language, to believe /sign off the crime figures from Chief Constables via the Home Office.

The American Department Of Homeland Security is not happy about EU and UK border controls, numbers of migrants nor the quality and veracity of passports and EU/UK identification documentation, to the point where it has suspended its “Visa Waiver Programme” until such time as it deems that the UK and the EU have tightened up their procedures. This process of “tightening up” is not in evidence and is being exploited by smuggling gangs bring people into the country by rubber boats to remote parts of the coast, lorries marked TIR being used to smuggle people and by almost nonexistent border controls at ferry and bus terminals. The UK is already being flooded with all kinds of undocumented and fake documented migrants and the migration deal with Turkey, irrespective of Turkey’s accession to full EU membership will accelerate the process unless it is stopped.

Boris Johnson, for reasons of political ambition does not go into this sort of detail and the Daily Mail is written for people with a reading age of 9 who are not detail oriented. That said, they have in their processes of headline seeking and sensationalism hit upon elements of the truth and a very real problem that the EU under its present leadership is not addressing.

John Gelmini