There has been a significant drop in drug seizures across England and Wales in 2012/13, which may well go some way to explaining the big reduction in crime that we have seen recently. The drop in North Wales Police area has been significantly more than in Wales as a whole.
The highest numbers of seizures was in 2008/09 with 2531 seizures compared to 1571 in 2012/13 a reduction of nearly 40%. Across Wales the reduction was only 10%, from 13,790 to 12,339 seizures.
What these figures don't tell us whether there have been less seizures but greater quantities seized, but the national indications are that quantities seized by Police Forces is also down with quantities of Cannabis Resin seized down 45%.
I don't think there is anyone who believes that drug use in North Wales has reduced by 40% over the last few years so there is therefore only one answer to these significant changes and that is Policing priorities, with seizures of controlled substances no longer seen as a priority resulting in a reduction of proactive targeting of possession of drugs and consequently a reduction in crime figures.
Perhaps the Police Commissioner, Winston Roddick can explain how North Wales Police's operational policing tactics fits in with his Police and Crime Plan, where Protecting People and Reducing Harm is a Policing objective?