Mexican drug cartels pushing crystal meth in NL, Western Europe: report

Police investigating a crystal meth lab found on a cargo boat in Moerdijk, 10 May 2019
Police investigating a crystal meth lab found on a cargo boat in Moerdijk, 10 May 2019Photo: Politie

The police are finding an increasing number of crystal  meth labs in the Netherlands. Mexican drug cartels are trying to push the highly-addictive and dangerous drug in Western Europe, police sources told newspaper AD.

So far, crystal meth is not very popular in the Netherlands. "The use and trade of crystal meth in the Netherlands is marginal", police spokesperson Robbert Salome said to AD. But the price is falling, drug researcher Ton Nabben said to the newspaper. "A gram used to cost 150 euros and in the last year only 80 to 100 euros. That indicates a greater availability. We also see it in Amsterdam: the number of dealers offering the drugs is increasing."

According to AD's police sources, Mexican drug cartels are working hard on expanding the market. Jan Struijs, chairman of police union NPB, called it a worrying situation. "They first focused on Eastern Europe. There you can see the crystal meth zombies. Now they are trying in the west."

Last month the police found a crystal meth lab on a large river boat in Moerdijk in Noord-Brabant. Three people from Mexico were arrested. In February two Mexicans were arrested in a crystal meth lab in Wateringen. According to AD, one of these two suspects comes from the Sinaloa region, where a drug cartel is active. On Sunday the police dismantled a crystal meth lab in The Hague, though whether this lab has any link to Mexico is not yet clear.