Statistics of seizures show that the import of the drug crystal is increasing sharply in Sweden. But the statistics are blunt, according to Lennart Karlsson, who is a narcotics police officer in Stockholm and chairman of the Narcotics Police Association.

"The seizures show where the police have stopped large shipments of crystal, but you can't see where it is used among young people.

Where does the drug crystal increase the most?

But through his network of contacts in the narcotics police association, Lennart Karlsson receives clear signals: It is a small-town phenomenon.

"There is a belt going through Sweden. From the area around Sandviken-Gävle, down through Uppland, Sörmland, Östergötland. Motala is the epicenter.

Stockholm is completely rounded, according to Lennart Karlsson. And that picture is confirmed by chief physician Juan Figueroa at Maria Ungdom in Stockholm:

"I have worked here for 26 years and have not met a single patient who has taken crystal. In Stockholm, there are all kinds of drugs available in other ways, which are not available in the rest of the country, he says.

In the video above, Lennart Karlsson tells us more about why he thinks it has turned out this way – and why he is still hopeful.

There you meet teenagers who take crystal

But in several smaller towns there is an avalanche-like increase, especially among younger teenagers and at Maria Ungdom in Motala, the staff testify that even 12-13-year-olds have come with an addiction to crystal. And at Maria Ungdom in Mjölby, the staff know that 11-year-olds have been offered to buy crystal during school hours.

SVT Nyheter Öst depicts in several publications the development of the new drug 3-cmc, which is called crystal, among other things. We have requested the number of seizures per local police area – and it is clear that there are strong variations between different areas (see box below).

In the video below, a girl talks about why she started – and how she now has to fight to get rid of the side effects:

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She thought she could stop taking the drug crystal whenever she wanted. Now she struggles with serious side effects, despite being drug-free for months. Photo: SVT