Consultation outcome

Cutting agents consultation

This consultation was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

This consultation has concluded

Download the full outcome

Detail of outcome

The government ran a consultation, from 28 May to 7 July 2013, which sought views on the introduction of new civil powers to allow law enforcement agencies to tackle the trade in chemical substances used as cutting agents to bulk the volume of illegal drugs.

There were 24 responses to the consultation, the majority of which were supportive of the proposals.

Original consultation

This consultation ran from to

Summary

Consultation on new powers to allow law enforcement agencies to seize chemical substances suspected of being used as drug cutting agents

Documents

Consultation document

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Impact assessment

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Consultation description

This consultation seeks views on the proposal to introduce new powers to allow law enforcement agencies to seize and detain chemical substances suspected of being used as drug cutting agents. The consultation will run for 6 weeks from 28 May 2013 until 7 July 2013.

The government’s 2010 Drug Strategy made a commitment to develop a robust approach to stop criminals profiting from the trade in cutting agents, working with production countries, the legitimate trade and international partners.

Certain chemical substances, some of which have a legitimate use in the manufacture of medicinal products for human or veterinary use, may also be used as cutting agents for bulking illegal drugs. The use of cutting agents by criminals to increase the volume of the drugs, and therefore their own criminal profits, is a matter of great concern. That is why we are looking to consult on our proposals to enable law enforcement agencies, in the absence of a criminal prosecution, to seize and destroy any specified cutting agent which is reasonably suspected of being intended for use in unlawful conduct (ie drug trafficking).

The ’grey market’ trade (ie where it is unclear if there is an apparent legitimate end use) in these substances has become a significant element of the domestic cocaine trade over the last 5 years, but there are currently no laws or regulations that specifically target the domestic trade in cutting agents.

More information about the policy context of these proposals is set out in the 2010 Drug Strategy.

More information on the specific proposals to introduce these new powers is available in the full consultation document and the impact assessment which should be read alongside the online form.

How to respond

Please send us your comments by using our online form.

Alternatively, you can email your response to: drugcuttingagentsconsultation@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk