• Germany's news in English
 
Crystal meth usage rising in Germany
Photo: DPA

Crystal meth usage rising in Germany

Published: 02 Feb 2013 13:35 GMT+01:00

Experience in the United States shows not only how addictive the drug is, but how much damage it can do to people – both mentally and physically, the paper said.

The drug is cheaper than others to manufacture and is being imported from the Czech Republic. It is easy to make and there are even internet videos explaining how. Increasingly the drug is also being imported from Africa, the paper said.

“Crystal is in Germany on the rise and is expanding from the southern states to the north and west,” Tom Bernhardt, a spokesman for the State Police in Saxony told the paper.

Some 40 kilos of the drug were confiscated in 2011, according to the Federal Criminal Office. The traffic is especially bad in Szony - there the number of meth users rose by 45 percent between 2011 and 2010 and increased by as much as 70 percent in some areas.

National statistics for 2012 are not yet available, but the trend is clear, the paper wrote.

“The discovered amounts and the cases involving crystal have shown a significant increase for 2012,” a spokeswoman for the Federal Criminal Office said.

The paper reported that the first numbers available for 2012 are showing a horrifying trend. In Bavaria the number of first time consumers, as documented by the police, of crystal and other hard drugs rose from 24 in 2009 to 456 in 2012.

Saxony Anhalt reported a 50 percent increase in crystal meth use last year, a police spokesman said.

But the paper noted that the high figures reflect a greater scrutiny of the drug – and when enforcement efforts are stepped up the numbers can be expected to increase.

The effects of crystal meth are similar to cocaine. It makes people euphoric, increases their confidence and sex drive and reduces hunger and thirst. People can stay up for long periods of time – 36 hours or more – and then they crash when the drug’s effect goes away, followed by insomnia, anxiety and depression.

Horror pictures of meth addicts with eroded teeth and severe pock marks on their face have been published in the United States for years.

For Dr Härtel­ Petri that just shows how bad the American healthcare system is. “In Germany you can hardly find such pictures. Whoever has bad teeth goes to the dentist and gets them fixed. Crystal addicts are visually hard to recognize in Germany,” he said.

Crystal is a synthetic drug that is crushed and snorted. It was given to soldiers in World War II and known as “tank chocolate” or “Hitler Speed” as a way to eliminate their fears. But the doses were much lower back then than what addicts take today, Petri said.

Tennis star Andre Agassi, who is married to German tennis star Steffi Graf, admitted to using the drug until 1997.

The Local/mw

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

15:26 February 2, 2013 by raandy
They will soon be" cranking" it up.
16:22 February 2, 2013 by pepsionice
I'd make the comment that there was meth version 1 (the WW II type), version 2 (what was used up until the last decade), and version 3 (the turbo stuff).

You probably could have gotten off version 1 and 2 with a bit of effort. It'd help you focus, stay awake for twenty hours a day, and go on even when you were tired.

Version 3? You just can't physically quit....ever. At its intensity, you could simply get a funny look from someone in the check-out line of a grocery, and suddenly feel like killing them....for no good reason. You make extremely irrational decisions, and never fear the cops, authority, the law, or rational logic.
17:08 February 2, 2013 by Vargaz
If we took the Scourges of Religion, Corruption, Mental Illnesses, Wars, Hatred, and Ignorance and added up the cumulative horrors, they would pale in comparison to the Scourge of Crystal Meth. This stuff destroys everything and everyone it touches then everything and everyone they touch. The one admirable thing about places like Malaysia, Singapore, China, and Iran is that they publicly execute traffickers of such a toxic and prolific public enemy. BANG! Hope Germany isn't as cowardly as America when it comes to eradicating the Satanic purveyors of meth or you are in for a BAD time. Check the Frontline documentary for this story.
17:52 February 2, 2013 by smart2012
pensionice, u said there are no issues in Germany???
18:47 February 2, 2013 by lwexcel
It is kind of enlightening to know that so many people, presumably from the U.S., have had such similar experiences when encountering the downsides of meth abuse. I have seen 40 year old men flip out and cry like babies, people freak out, and addicts stop at nothing to get what they want. Meth use leads to an increase in crime, and leaves families ripped apart. I think that people will start paying more attention when they start to see homes begin to catch on fire, when people pass out while cooking the drug.
19:12 February 2, 2013 by DOZ
Stupidity arises as well.
19:48 February 2, 2013 by raandy
lwexcel I have known some crank heads, but never saw one cry,or commit a crime other than snorting it up. Ya at the end of the day it is better to leave it alone but lets keep the hype out of it.
21:35 February 2, 2013 by MattyB
"For Dr Härtel­ Petri that just shows how bad the American healthcare system is. ¦quot;In Germany you can hardly find such pictures."

LMAO!!!! I find people in Germany every day who have teeth like a crystal meth user, and I'm pretty sure they're drug free. I love when otherwise intelligent Europeans believe the hype and propaganda their media pushes about Americans. We're all cowboys, love guns and religion, hate black people, and die bankrupt at the age of 40 because we lack health care!
22:02 February 2, 2013 by charlenej
@MattyB

Bwahahaha! I laughed at that doctor's statement, too. What an idiot! Has he ever seen a meth user? You can't just "get fixed". You age, you scar, it's permanent.

I imagine Germans will HATE what it does to property and property values. You can't get it out of the walls. If someone rents you place and cooks meth in it, you sometimes just have to tear it down because it's toxic after that.
22:45 February 2, 2013 by lwexcel
Oh wait a second, sorry everyone Raandy has 'known some crank heads' in his time so that makes him the overwhelming authority. Please ignore my comment and everything that I have said previously as it is all hype.
00:13 February 3, 2013 by GuidoGoth
cynicism

obviously a good war drug (...okay, and for stupid scum, who likes drugs).

/cynicism

Hm, i wonder how stupid some human beings can be to try every drug they can get. some people should rather "eat" some brain ;-).

HtH
09:12 February 3, 2013 by Wrench
Also known as Redneck Religion. It takes a true idiot to mess with this stuff. It is right up there with smoking tobacco.
10:35 February 3, 2013 by raandy
lwexcel you can tell a fool but you can't tell them much.
19:56 February 3, 2013 by lwexcel
Very true.
Today's headlines
Xenophobia thrives in shadow of Berlin towers
A demo in Marzahn-Hellersdorf. File photo: DPA

Xenophobia thrives in shadow of Berlin towers

There's little to break the monotony of communist-era apartment blocks stretching across Marzahn-Hellersdorf, an east Berlin satellite district that has gained national notoriety for a spate of anti-foreigner protests. READ  

Ecuador returns German money in oil valley spat
Photo: DPA

Ecuador returns German money in oil valley spat

Ecuador's President Rafael Correa said Saturday that Quito would be giving back about $8.5 million donated by Germany last year, in an environmental row. READ  

German bank sues Ecclestone for €345mn
Photo: DPA

German bank sues Ecclestone for €345mn

German bank BayernLB is seeking €345 million ($423 million) in a lawsuit against Formula One magnate Bernie Ecclestone over the 2006 sale of the sport's rights, according to a report. READ  

Löw aims for Euro 2016 with new-look Germany
Joachim Löw holding the World Cup trophy. File photo: DPA

Löw aims for Euro 2016 with new-look Germany

World Cup winners Germany have suffered something of a hangover since their triumph in Brazil, but coach Joachim Löw is hoping a new-look side can go on to claim more glory at Euro 2016. READ  

T-Mobile to pay $90 mn over US fraud charges
Photo: DPA

T-Mobile to pay $90 mn over US fraud charges

German mobile phone company T-Mobile has agreed to pay at least $90 million to settle US government claims that it bilked customers with bogus charges, US regulators said Friday. READ  

Ethics Council rejects assisted suicide law
Photo: DPA

Ethics Council rejects assisted suicide law

The German Ethics Council said the law should not be changed to permit assisted suicide in a paper published on Friday. READ  

Abandoned themepark needs 14m says Berlin
Swan Lake. An abandoned ride in the Spreewald pleasure park. Photo: DPA

Abandoned themepark needs 14m says Berlin

The iconic ruined themepark in the centre of Berlin - a long-time favourite of hipster adventurers - needs a clean-up costing at least 14 million euros, the Berlin government has revealed. READ  

Police nab Nuremberg station bomb hoaxer
File photo of Nuremberg main station: Shutterstock

Police nab Nuremberg station bomb hoaxer

Officers in Nuremberg arrested a man on Thursday evening after he called in a false bomb threat against the main train station READ  

Opinion
Angela, David...and Nigel
So near...and yet so far Photo: DPA

Angela, David...and Nigel

The rise of UKIP broke up what had been a good 2014 for Cameron and Merkel. READ  

'Dr Death' corpse museum gets go-ahead
Dr Gunther von Hagens. Photo: DPA

'Dr Death' corpse museum gets go-ahead

A Berlin court has said that infamous human taxidermist Gunther von Hagens can open a museum in the capital - over objections from local officials. READ  

RECEIVE OUR NEWSLETTER AND ALERTS
Willy Brandt at his inauguration in 1972. Photo: DPA
National
Willy Brandt: the man, the chancellor... the airport?
Dresden skyline and river by night. Photo: DPA
Politics
What does Dresden have against Muslims?
Sponsored Article
Why are these International Baccalaureate students cheering?
Germany's national football team lifts the World Cup trophy
Gallery
Germany's most-Googled words of 2014
National
Why has The Local got a new logo?
Photo: DPA
National
This German was abducted and tortured by the CIA
Culture
10 top tips for partying in Germany
Sponsored Article
Top ten gifts for an expat Christmas
Photo: DPA
Technology
What does the Chancellor see as the future of the internet?
Photo: DPA
Culture
Stuff your face with these festive German cookies
Photo: DPA
Culture
What do beer, breakfast cereal and dildos have in common?
Culture
The Local's guide to German Christmas markets
Sponsored Article
Top five quirky Christmas jumpers
Photo: DPA
Culture
Get ready for Christmas like a German. We tell you how.
Photo: DPA
Munich
She did what with her dead mother?
Photo: DPA
National
Germany still paying for crisis fall out
Photo: DPA
Culture
Saxon wurst is the worst, Christmas market declares.
Photo: DPA
Politics
Can 'sorry' ever be enough for the Linke?
Sponsored Article
Shop Christmas gifts at Debenhams international store
Photo: DPA
Berlin
The Local's series on 25 years since the fall of the Berlin Wall
Shutterstock
Sponsored Article
Offer: Unlimited airmiles through December 19th
Photo: DPA
Gallery
See how Berlin has changed in 22 photos
Photo: DPA
Business & Money
JobTalk: All you need to know about working in Germany
National
Share news tips with The Local Germany
Latest news from The Local in Austria

More news from Austria at thelocal.at

Latest news from The Local in Switzerland

More news from Switzerland at thelocal.ch

Latest news from The Local in Denmark

More news from Denmark at thelocal.dk

Latest news from The Local in Spain

More news from Spain at thelocal.es

Latest news from The Local in France

More news from France at thelocal.fr

Latest news from The Local in Italy

More news from Italy at thelocal.it

Latest news from The Local in Norway

More news from Norway at thelocal.no

Latest news from The Local in Sweden

More news from Sweden at thelocal.se

3,165
jobs available
The Local Spain is hiring!
The Local is seeking a new editor for our site in Spain to join our growing team of internationally-minded, driven, ambitious and clued-up journalists.
Details and how to apply
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd