There’s been a significant increase in the amount of cannabis use and possession caught by Dubbo police.
According to the latest Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research data, there were 179 incidents of using or possessing cannabis in Dubbo in the 12 months to March. It’s almost a 50 per cent increase from the previous 12 months.
Cannabis possession has remained stable in Bathurst and Orange. Both cities also had a lower number of incidents than Dubbo. There were 132 recorded incidents in Orange during the 12 months and 112 in Bathurst.
There were five incidents of cultivating cannabis for the year.
Cocaine use and possession also saw a significant jump.
While there were no incidents of cocaine use in the 12 months to March 2017, the following year there were 12.
Across NSW the number of arrests for cocaine possession rose by nearly 46 per cent.
Dubbo MP Troy Grant said the statistics relating to drug possession remained a concern, however, he said the NSW government’s targeted plan to stamp out drug and support affected communities was working.
“Evidently crime trends vary throughout NSW, and thanks to the re-engineering of the NSW Police Force, police districts and area commands now have greater agility and flexibility to proactively target and disrupt specific crime types,” Mr Grant said.
Possession of amphetamines – which includes ice – has remained stable. There were 71 incidents during the year.
Dubbo is on par with amphetamine possession in Orange at 72 incidents but significantly higher than in Bathurst at 42.
There have also been nine recorded cases of dealing or trafficking amphetamines.
NSW Police Commissioner Mick Fuller said police will continue to target organised crime networks responsible for the distribution of illicit substances through regular drug operations, including the use of drug dogs.
“Our focus is community safety and we won’t tolerate behaviour that risks the wellbeing of others.”
As part of the re-engineering process, the NSW Police announced several specialist units including five new Regional Enforcement Squads.
The RES units are comprised of specially-trained police tasked to disrupt drug supply and target gun crime, as part NSW Police Force’s commitment to providing specialist resources to regional areas.