The Naval Postgraduate School & The U.S. Department of Homeland Security

New Report: Drug Law Enforcement Interventions to Disrupt Drug Markets is Unlikely to Reduce Violence Attributable to Drug Gangs

Effect of Drug Law Enforcement on Drug-Related Violence: Evidence from a Scientific Review Today, the newly formed International Centre for Science in Drug Policy (ICSDP) released their first report: Effect of Drug Law Enforcement on Drug-Related Violence: Evidence from a Scientific Review. "Given the growing emphasis on evidence-based policy-making and the ongoing severe violence attributable to drug gangs in many countries around the world, a systematic review of the available English language scientific literature was conducted to examine the impacts of drug law enforcement interventions on drug market violence." The results of the review found that "an increase in drug law enforcement interventions to disrupt drug markets is unlikely to reduce violence attributable to drug gangs. Instead, from an evidence-based public policy perspective and based on several decades of available data, the existing evidence strongly suggests that drug law enforcement contributes to gun violence and high homicide rates and that increasingly sophisticated methods of disrupting organizations involved in drug distribution could unintentionally increase violence. In this context, and since drug prohibition has not achieved its stated goal of reducing drug supply, alternative models for drug control may need to be considered if drug-related violence is to be meaningfully reduced."