This Is How Many People Are Murdered For That Gram Of Cocaine

A sobering insight into the drugs trade has emerged

Cocaine is a drug that, over the years, has been the subject of consistent glamorisation, from films like Blow  to Netflix's Narcos, which compellingly showed the flamboyant and brutal career and life of Pablo Escobar, a man who shifted a few grams during his time.

But now figures released by the National Crime Agency and PBS have revealed the human effect that comes from our fondness for coke, with the estimated murder toll caused by drug cartels enough to fill a football stadium. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Between 2007 and 2014, 164,000 people were murdered in Mexico, with the estimated number of those deaths coming at the hands of the cartels who control the drug trade, ranging from a third to 55%. 

That's up to 90,000 people.

Around 25 to 30 tonnes of cocaine is trafficked into the UK every year, an increase that has tripled over the past two decades. 

"When [people] use cocaine, aside from putting their own lives at risk, they are feeding an industry which routinely uses death, violence and destruction in its production process," Tony Saggers, head of the NCA's Drugs Threat division, said.

"Buying cocaine funds the exploitation of impoverished people, destroys and pollutes large areas of rainforest, forces people from their homes so coca can be grown on their land, and results in the murder of police officers and others who stand in the way of powerful crime groups."

Sobering stuff.