Five-Year Drug Abuse Prevention Strategy in Japan


Headquarters for th Promotion of Measures to Prevent Drug Abuse

Digest Version: Five-Year Drug Abuse Prevention Strategy

Basic objective: To implement emergency measures for ending the third period of stimulant drug abuse in Japan as soon as possible and to make a positive contribution to solving the global problem of drug abuse

Problem: Arrival of a third period of stimulant drug abuse

In 1997, 19,937 persons were arrested (charged by the police) for stimulant drug related crimes, which is approaching the level of 20,000 persons. In view of the rapidly increasing numbers of junior and senior high school students arrested for stimulant drug related crimes (262 students in 1997, the highest number ever), it is judged that a third period of stimulant drug abuse has arrived (the first period was in the early 1950s and the second period in the early 1980s).

Basic strategy: To implement an urgent two-pronged plan to cut off supply and reduce demand, in order to end this period of drug abuse as soon as possible

The basic strategy is to end the third period of stimulant drug abuse as soon as possible through a five-year programme, with this effort being carried out by comprehensive measures aimed at cutting off the supply of drugs and reducing demand, concerned ministries and agencies working in close cooperation. The measures for cutting off supply include prevention of smuggling at the border, strict control of those engaged in illicit traffic (organized crime groups and some foreign undesirables), and other emergency measures for preventing drug related crime (main text 2-(1)). The measures for decreasing demand include fostering awareness of the importance of refusing to abuse drugs by providing more education in this area, in response to the decline in moral standards that lies behind the increase in drug abuse among young people (2-(2)). Japan will also make a contribution aimed at solving the problem of drug abuse throughout the world, through its own experience about this problem (2-(3)).

Objective 1: To halt drug abuse trends among young people by educating them about its hazards

Problem: Stimulant drug abuse crime is increasing among young people.

It has been pointed out that this trend may be attributed to a deteriorating social environment, and less caution about or resistance to drugs, as indicated by survey results that show that about 20% of high school students think individuals should be free to use drugs.

To halt this trend it is necessary to improve school guidance on drug abuse prevention (main text 2-(1)). Specifically, guidance should be provided at both the primary and secondary school levels (this should be explicitly stated in the curriculum for primary schools) and drug abuse prevention classes should be given every year at all junior and senior high schools. In addition, it is necessary to strengthen on-the-spot guidance system, secure cooperation for it (2-(2)), improve measures for protecting young people from re-abusing (2-(3)), improve a consulting system supported by the related organizations (2-(4)), and promote related publicity and education (2-(5)).

Objective 2:To strictly control groups engaged in illicit traffic, which consist of organized crime groups and some foreign undesirables, by implementing effective and efficient action against the increasingly sophisticated sales of illicit drugs

Problem: The traffic in illicit drugs is carried out by organized crime groups and some foreign undesirables.

Foreign undesirables such as some unfavorable Iranians began to sell illicit drugs on the streets using cellular phones, whose number has been increasing these years. Behind these foreign undesirables, there are criminal enterprises such as organized crime groups deeply involved in drug related crime. This revolutionary change in the final form of illicit sales has made it easier for the general public, and in particular young people, to obtain drugs, bringing about the present third period of stimulant drug abuse.

It is necessary to take measures to prevent drug related crime by organized crime groups, by depriving them of their illicit proceeds (main text 2-(1)), and to enforce strict control over those foreigners engaged in illicit drug traffic (2-(2)). In addition, it is necessary to impose strict law enforcement to end abusers (2-(3)), strengthen measures to prevent increasingly subtle and clever illicit sales methods such as the use of cellular phones. (2-(4)), take necessary countermeasures against the wide variety of drugs abused, including marijuana, cocaine, MDMA, and psychotropic drugs, and strictly supervise legal distribution (2-(5)).

Objective 3: To interdict smuggling at the border and promote international cooperation, including support for measures in illicit drug production areas

Problem: Due to the illicit production and illegal distribution of drugs worldwide, smuggling of drugs into Japan has increased.

Illegal drugs abused in Japan ,including stimulants (methamphetamine) illicitly produced in China, are largely smuggled in from overseas. The illicit production and distribution of drugs is an international phenomenon. Illegal drugs are being smuggled into Japan in ever-increasing quantities, and the methods used are becoming increasingly sophisticated.

Regarding the measures to be taken to detect smuggling across borders, Japan will strengthen the gathering system of information (main text 2-(1)) and tighten controls over drug smuggling , for example, through joint investigations (2-(2)). We will also strive to cut off the supply of illicit drugs on an international basis (2-(3)). Japan will promote "International cooperation programmes for prevention of drug abuse", particularly through ODA. These programmes aim to foster cooperation with Asian countries and areas on the enforcement of the law with respect to reduce illicit production in order to cut off the supply of drugs and bring an end to smuggling.

Objective 4:To support the rehabilitation of drug intoxicated persons and prevent them from relapsing into drug abuse

Problem: Drug-related crimes have a high recidivism rate and the problem of drug dependence (or drug intoxication) is serious.

Stimulants can cause toxic psychosis and no permanent cure for drug dependence has yet been found. It is important to enable drug intoxicated persons not only to stop abusing drugs but also break the habits such abuse engenders.

Regarding the measures to be taken, we will enhance treatment for drug dependence/intoxication (main text 2-(1)) through improvement of the medical care system, for example, by securing special hospital beds. We will support systems for the rehabilitation of drug dependent, or intoxicated persons (2-(2)) by encouraging medical institutions, regional narcotics control offices, other public organizations, consultants, and volunteers to establish regional consultation and guidance networks centering on the mental health and welfare centers.

#1 Changes in Number of Stimulant Drug-related Arrests (charged persons): 1951 - 1997

#2 Number of High School Students Arrested (charged) for Stimulant-related Crimes and Proportion of Minors among those arrested (charged)

Five-Year Drug Abuse Prevention Strategy

26 May, 1998
Headquarters for the Promotion of Measures to Prevent Drug Abuse


On 18 April, 1997, a decision was made at the Headquarters for the Promotion of Measures to Prevent Drug Abuse to formulate a comprehensive, long-term programme for Japan in preparation for the Twentieth Special Session of the U.N. General Assembly devoted to countering the world drug problem together, which has the aim of studying measures to prevent drug abuse in the 21st century. The Five-Year Drug Abuse Prevention Strategy was subsequently drawn up, working in close cooperation, to take the necessary actions are to reorganise drug abuse prevention measures and incorporate them into one comprehensive strategy to cope with serious problem such as the increase in drug abuse centring on stimulant drugs in recent years and to clarify Japan's role in solving the global problem of drug abuse in the 21st century in preparation for the Special Session on International Drug Control of the U.N. General Assembly.

The Five-Year Drug Abuse Prevention Strategy sets goals for the measures to be taken by the ministries and agencies that constitute the Headquarters. Since both awareness and cooperation on the part of those concerned are essential in solving the problem of drug abuse, the Strategy presents specific targets that can serve as guidelines not only for administrative organizations, but also for those responsible for solving the problem of drug abuse by analysing and showing its current status, characteristics, causes, problems, and measures of drug abuse. The Headquarters will ask local headquarters for drug abuse prevention to strengthen measures to accomplish the objectives of the Strategy, with the cooperation of related administrative organizations.

The Headquarters was set up in January 1997 on account of the worsening drug situation in recent years. In view of this fact, the Five-Year Drug Abuse Prevention Strategy should specify urgently required measures needed to solve the current problem of drug abuse. We also believe that it is Japan's role to help solving the world drug problem from the long-term perspective. So the Strategy also should be formulated with the long-term goal of clarifying Japan's role in solving the world drug problem in preparation for the Twentieth Special Session of the U.N. General Assembly. Therefore, the Strategy is targeted for the five years from 1998 until 2002. A basic objective and four specific objectives are to be set for this period. The current status, problems, and measures for each of these will be presented here.

Basic objective: To implement emergency measures for ending the third period of stimulant drug abuse in Japan as soon as possible and to make a positive contribution to solving the global problem of drug abuse.

The third period of stimulant drug abuse has now arrived in Japan. The basic strategy for preventing drug abuse in Japan for the next five years is to take a two-pronged approach of cutting off supply and decreasing demand, with an awareness of the serious current situation and to promote international cooperation to overcome the current situation.

In order cut off supply, it is important to strengthen measures to interdict drug smuggling at the border, enforce strict police control over groups engaged in illicit traffic in Japan, such as organized crime groups, and promote international cooperation by supporting related activities in countries or areas from which drugs are smuggled to Japan. These are the principal means of cutting off drug supply.

To reduce demand, it is important to strengthen police control over end users and restore moral awareness, which is declining especially among youth, by improving education on the hazards of drug abuse. It is also important to support treatment for drug users and drug intoxicated persons and their return to society so that they will not abuse drugs again.

In sum, the basic strategic objective is to end the third period of stimulant drug abuse as soon as possible during the five years starting in 1998 by implementing these drug abuse preventing measures in a comprehensive manner in close cooperation between related governmental organizations.

1. Basic recognition of current status and problems

(1) Arrival of third period of stimulant drug abuse

(Summary of problem)

According to a recent report, the number of persons arrested (charged by the police) for stimulant drug related crimes was 19,937 in 1997, increasing for three years in succession and coming close to the level of 20,000 persons per year. The number of arrested persons exceeded 20,000 during the high drug abuse period of 1980 - 1988, but fell to about 15,000 in 1989. The percentage of minors, which exceeded 11% during the peak period, decreased by nearly half to 5%. These indicators began increasing in 1995. The number of arrested senior high school students doubled for two years in succession in 1995 and 1996. In 1997, the number of arrested junior high school students doubled. Thus, the number of junior and senior high school students arrested greatly exceeds the level during the previous period.

One development is that junior and senior high school students are buying stimulant drugs sold indiscriminately on the streets by illicit trafficking groups consisting of foreign undesirables using cellular phones. These young people buy stimulant drugs simply out of curiosity or as a fashion. Some use by youth was observed during previous periods of drug abuse, however, one characteristic of the current situation is an increasingly clear tendency for not only members of organized crime and the like, but also ordinary citizens such as students, to be involved in stimulant drug crime. This is an obvious qualitative change. This new group of drug users (in addition to drug dependent persons who are unable to stop using drugs) accounts for the rise in arrested persons to nearly 20,000. In view of these facts, it is evidenced that Japan has entered a third period of stimulant drug abuse, following the first period when the number of persons arrested in 1954 was 55,000 and the second period when 24,000 were arrested in 1984.

(Serious threat for the youth)

Another serious situation is now developing. Young people who become drug users are inviting friends to use drugs or are taking part in sales of illicit drugs to obtain funds to buy drugs for themselves. As a result, the number of new drug users increases rapidly. If appropriate measures are taken in a timely manner at this stage, young people who have become drug users may find it possible to come back to a normal life. Such measures are expected to have a great impact on preventing drug abuse in society as a whole. According to the results of a governmental survey conducted in 1997, nearly 90% of both high school teachers and parents of high school students regard the current problem of drug abuse as a "serious situation," showing that they have a correct understanding of the problem of drug abuse. It is urgently necessary that appropriate action be taken based on the opinions of these people, who have many opportunities to come in contact with the youth.

(2) Declining moral sense among youth

(Declining moral sense)

One of the characteristics of the third period of stimulant drug abuse is a decline in moral sense, especially among youth. The situation with respect to drug abuse has generally been better in Japan than in other advanced countries, except for a short time during the post-war period and recently, mainly because Japan has a legal system that prohibits drug abuse and the police authorities have strictly enforced the law. A moral awareness and respect for the law have been the foundation of this attitude to avoid drugs. However, the reluctance to use drugs is decreasing, particularly among young people, due to a decline in moral standards and a growing tendency to enjoy life, and the imported idea that "individuals should be free to decide whether to use drugs." These trends are lowering the moral sense formerly against drug-related crime. It is important for society as a whole to clearly say "No, Absolutely No!" to the erroneous idea that individuals are free to use drugs as long as it does not harm others.

(Re-acknowledging the problems resulting from drug abuse)

It is necessary for us once again to acknowledge the problems associated with drug abuse. People who become drug users are unable to quit taking drugs of their own will. Drug abuse causes irreversible damage to the human brain. Stimulant drugs and marijuana lead to psychopathic symptoms such as delusions of persecution and hallucination. Drug abuse is not a problem that effects only the user, since it often leads to serious crime and social tragedy. For example, drug intoxicated persons sometimes attack people who they mistakenly believe are trying to attack them. In some cases, they commit crimes to obtain money to buy drugs. Drug-related violence in the family leads the destruction of the family. Profits from drug sales become the main resources of criminal organizations such as "Boryoku-dan". These problems resulting from drug abuse seriously threaten the basis of society. In view of these evil influences of drug abuse, a whole series of drug abuse related activities are punishable as crimes in Japan, in order to protect the safety of individuals and society.

(3) Global problem of drug abuse

(International cooperation for measures to combat drug abuse)

Almost all stimulant drugs and other drugs are manufactured overseas and smuggled into Japan. The third period of stimulant drug abuse in Japan is a part of a worldwide problem of drug abuse. It is said that smuggling and illicit sales of drugs are among the major sources of funds for international criminal organizations. Therefore, international cooperation is important to control the organized criminal transportation of drugs and their raw materials across national boundaries. However, the structure for cooperation is not yet developed completely. In view of the fact that in the past the most effective means of solving the problem of drug abuse was to cut off the supply, cooperation with supply countries (such as Asian countries) is essential in solving the global problem of drug abuse.

(International cooperation in the field of stimulant drugs)

The problem of stimulant drug abuse, which previously was peculiar to Japan, is also becoming a serious threat in other countries such as those in Southeast Asia and the U.S.A. Stimulant drugs involve hazards which differ from narcotic drugs, in that they directly cause crime due to mental disorders such as hallucinations and delusions. However, the evil effects of stimulant drugs are not sufficiently recognised or controlled in other countries. The U.N. Commission on Narcotic Drugs has set countermeasures for (amphetamine type) stimulant drugs abuse as one of the items on the agenda in preparation for the Twentieth Special Session on of the U.N. General Assembly planned for June 1998. Japan, which has ample experience with the evil influences of stimulant drug abuse and in control activities, should take the lead in planning countermeasures for drug abuse and controlling drug related crimes. Japan is requested to make an international contribution by promoting cooperation throughout the world, especially in Asian countries, in order to take action to control stimulant drugs.

2. Basic idea of countermeasures

In view of the current status and problems of drug abuse, the Headquarter has set the following basic objective: "Implementing emergency measures for ending the third period of stimulant drug abuse as soon as possible and making a positive contribution to solving the global problem of drug abuse." A two-pronged approach, decreasing demand for drugs and cutting off the supply, should be taken to accomplish this basic objective. These measures can be classified as preventive or post-facto and as domestic or international. Therefore, the Headquarters established the following four objectives to augment these measures under a comprehensive strategy through cooperation between related ministries and agencies.

The four objectives are as follows:

Objective 1: To halt drug abuse trends among young people by educating them about its hazards
Objective 2: To strictly control groups engaged in illicit traffic, which consist of organized crime groups and some foreign undesirables, by implementing effective and efficient action against the increasingly sophisticated sales of illicit drugs
Objective 3: To interdict smuggling at the border and promote international cooperation, including support for measures in illicit drug production areas
Objective 4: To support the rehabilitation of drug intoxicated persons and prevent them from relapsing into drug abuse

Since three elements, host, agent, and environment, are interrelated in the problem of drug abuse in a complex manner, governmental organizations that are responsible for controlling crime, controlling drugs, controlling international movements of people and goods, and providing education must cooperate with each other to examine and implement multilateral measures. Measures for achieving objectives 1 to 4 are presented below. The following basic ideas are behind them:

(1) Emergency law enforcement measures against stimulant drug related crime

Japan is now entering a third period of stimulant drug abuse. Junior and senior high school students can easily buy stimulant drugs called "Speed" or "S" on the street from certain foreign undesirables. These circumstances, which Japan has never experienced before, should be recognised as a serious threat to safety of life for people. The related law enforcement organizations constituting the Drug Abuse Prevention Measures Promotion HQ are to cooperate with each other in discovering the routes used for smuggling and illicit sales, arresting end drug users, promoting installation of and R&D on law enforcement equipment, improving investigative and law enforcement techniques for organized drug crime, analysing financial information, and depriving criminals of illicit proceeds, in order to take urgent action aimed at preventing organized smuggling and illicit sales of drugs. An all-out effort must be made to control crime connected to stimulant drugs in this manner.

(2) Fostering the sense to refuse drug use

(Creating an environment untainted by drugs)

All advanced countries including Japan are faced with an increasingly serious problem of drug abuse, which is threatening safe living in society. It becomes more difficult to solve this problem at their roots in spite of governmental efforts, as it becomes more serious. It is necessary to recognise the importance of implementing cornerstone measures at the current stage to create an environment that is untainted by drugs. This is an extremely important issue for the future of our country.

(Fostering the sense to refuse drug use)

It is important to provide youth with additional education on drug abuse at school and in other forums so that they gain a correct understanding of the hazards and adverse effects of drugs. It is also important to foster the general sense to avoid using drugs with the cooperation of the mass media. Some countries recognize that drug exists and exclude the use and possession of drugs for personal use from criminal offences. At international conferences Japan must make an appeal to these countries about the importance of educational activities to recover a moral sense among youth in order to foster an international consensus to reject drug abuse.

(3) International contribution aimed at solving the drug abuse problem in Japan and in the world

(Basic concept of international contribution)

From the viewpoint of cutting off the supply of drugs from overseas countries and areas, Japan should assist measures in countries and areas from which stimulants are smuggled to Japan to control illegal producers, and to eliminate illicit manufacturing sites, and to take the initiative to solve drug problems in these countries and areas. In response to requests from the countries concerned, it is appropriate that Japan plays an international role based on its experience in controlling stimulants, including control of chemical precursors of drugs and medical treatment of mental disorders resulting from drug abuse.

(International cooperation in the prevention of stimulant drug abuse)

Japan will implement an international cooperation program for preventing stimulant drug abuse as one means of making an international contribution. Using existing ODA scheme effectively, Japan, in response to requests from Asian countries, will reinforce the structure that acts as a national center of international cooperation network to control stimulant drug in cooperation with the United Nations International Drug Control Programme (UNDCP). Also, on results of R&D, Japan will provide foreign countries with information on the hazardous effects of stimulant drugs and drug control, as well as funds and equipment for education aimed to prevent drug abuse. Additionally, Japan will assist Asian countries in improving education and training of inspectors and instructors and support for alternative crop development. Japan will take comprehensive action while taking safety into account.

Objective 1:To halt drug abuse trends among young people by educating them about its hazards

1. Current status and problem

(1) Increasing stimulant drug abuse among young people

(Increasing stimulant drug abuse among junior and senior high school students)

A fact-finding study on drug abuse by young people shows that the number of stimulant drug abuse offenses has been increasing recently, although the abuse of paint thinner must not be overlooked. This trend is especially obvious among junior and senior high school students. The number of high school students charged by the police for committing stimulant drug related crimes was 42 in 1994, 93 in 1995, and 220 in 1996, showing a two-fold increase for two years in succession. The latest figure is even higher than the 143 in 1982, the peak year of the second period of stimulant drug abuse. In 1997, the number of high school students charged by the police was 219, nearly the same as the previous year, but that of junior high school students was 43, a two-fold increase from the 21 in 1996. This rapid increase in charges by students indicates that stimulant drugs are infiltrating junior and senior high school and that drug abuse is spreading among younger people. Young people tend to abuse drugs with friends without giving it much thought and even buy or use drugs at school. Thus the current situation is extremely serious.

(High school students' awareness of stimulant drugs)

According to a survey announced in January 1998, 6.5% of high school students have been asked to use drugs and about 10% have had a desire to use drugs out of curiosity or simply for fun. Stimulant drugs account for 50.5% of the drugs they want to try, higher than the 36.0% for thinner. This means that crimes of stimulant drug abuse will rapidly increase in the future among young people, especially among high school students.

(2) Deteriorating social environment of young people

Juvenile delinquency had been increasing recently, in spite of the decrease in the youth population. The numbers of boys and girls who commit criminal offenses and receive guidance are continually increasing. It may be said that a fourth period of increased juvenile delinquency since the end of the War is beginning. One of the factors that contributes to the increasing numbers of young drug users is that drugs have become easier to obtain due to the appearance of illegal sales groups consisting of foreign undesirables who stand near stations or in shopping areas and indiscriminately offer drugs to pedestrians. There are other factors that promote drug abuse among young people. For example, society is being flooded with a great amount of information that treats drug abuse simply as a means of having fun. The number of stores such as game centers that promote misbehaviour and undesirable behaviour by young people is increasing. Businesses that promote immoral sexual behaviour are increasing. Families are losing the ability to provide family education due to decreasing family size. The local community's contribution to preventing delinquency is declining. It can be said that problems of local communities, homes, and schools are interacting with each other in a complex manner to promote drug abuse by young people.

(3) Decreasing cautiousness and resistance against drugs

(Trend of easy-going abuse of drugs among young people)

It has been found that some juveniles who abuse drugs began using drugs simply out of curiosity or by imitating friends without giving it much thought. Some have the erroneous idea that stimulant drugs are an effective means of dieting or consider use of stimulant drugs known as "S" or "Speed" as simply a fashion trend. Another tendency is that young people reduce feelings of guilt by inhaling steam produced by heating stimulant drugs or by drinking them mixed with juice, instead of performing intravenous injections using a syringe. A fact-finding survey of drug intoxicated persons shows that young drug users lack accurate knowledge about the hazards and harms of drug abuse and that cautiousness and resistance to drugs are weakening.

(Decreasing cautiousness indicated by drug awareness survey)

According to a survey about drug awareness of students announced in January 1997, older students have more accurate knowledge of laws related to use or possession of drugs, and they have a more accurate understanding of the hazards and harms of using drugs. Students who say, "Whether or not to use drugs should be up to the individual, because it does not harm others," account for 15.7% of boys in the third year of high school. This trend is endorsed by the results of a survey announced in January 1998, in which source 90% of high school students know that possession or use of drugs is punishable by law, but about 20% (27% of male students) think an individual is free to decide whether to use drugs. According to a study of juveniles' awareness of drugs and juvenile delinquency announced in November 1997, the ratio of students who think "decisions about drug use should be left up the individual" increases as age increases. This indicates that moral obligation towards society weakens as age increases. This shows that cautiousness against and resistance to drugs are seriously decreasing, even among ordinary young people.

2. Measures

(1) Improving guidance at school for preventing drug abuse

(Guidance for preventing drug abuse at the primary and secondary school level)

Childhood and adolescence are periods when young people are often given chances to start using toxic substances including tobacco (nicotine) and liquor (alcohol). Since they are still growing both physically and mentally, they easily become dependent on drugs. Serious effects, such as inhibition of character formation, tend to occur. Therefore, it is extremely important to start to provide counselling to prevent drug abuse at the primary and secondary school level. The current curriculum provides for clear, detailed guidelines for the prevention of drug abuse to be given in "health and physical education" in junior and senior high schools, but provides for no similar guidance in "physical education" at primary schools. For this reason, courses of study to prevent drug abuse will be included at the primary school level when the curriculum is revised. Teachers will be provided with more thorough guidelines so that they can make better use of student guidance functions such as educational counselling and so that they can provide instructions for preventing drug abuse as part of moral education and special activities.

Guidance for preventing drug abuse at school should be improved in view of the fact that cautiousness and resistance to drugs among young people is decreasing as revealed by the above-mentioned survey. In other words, it is not enough simply to give students information about drugs. They must be guided so that they acquire moral awareness and understanding that they should refrain from drug abuse for their own sake, not only now, but also in the future, and so that they understand that drug abuse is socially prohibited behaviour.

(Annual drug abuse prevention class in all junior and senior high schools)

Educational opportunities for teachers (such as seminars held by Ministry of Education, Science, Sports and Culture and prefectural boards of education) will be increased to increase their ability to provide guidance for drug abuse prevention. Teaching materials for students and guidance materials for teachers such as video tapes, pamphlets, and handbooks will be improved so that students can easily understand the hazards and harms of drug abuse.

For drug abuse prevention classes, which are currently held mainly at high schools, the effectiveness of cooperation between teachers, police officials, and former narcotics control officers has been recognised. Therefore, steps will be taken to hold such classes in close cooperation with related organizations. Efforts will be made to give drug abuse prevention classes at least once a year at all junior and senior high schools. Such classes in primary schools, depending on local circumstances, will be held.

Individual boards of education are to strengthen and improve support for studies about drugs not only in schools but also in homes and local communities. Social educational facilities should hold short courses on drug abuse prevention and set up consulting contact points for local residents. They should provide other opportunities and facilities for related activities. Related groups, such as PTAs, will be asked to take an active role.

(2) Strengthening the on-the-spot guidance system and obtaining cooperation

It is important to find out which juvenile groups are in danger of being involved in drug offenses and which groups actually possess drugs at an early stage and to provide them with the guidance they need to prevent drug abuse. For this reason, efforts will be made to discover such juveniles as soon as possible and to strengthen the on-the-spot guidance system in close cooperation with organizations and groups engaged in the prevention of juvenile delinquency and in youth education. Efforts will also be made to obtain cooperation from managers of stores near stations and shopping areas and local residents. Consulting services by related organizations and local volunteers will be improved. Measures will be taken to improve the quality and capabilities of juvenile guidance staff at juvenile guidance centers established by local governments and police volunteers for juveniles.

Crimes of stimulant drug abuse among young people and related serious crimes should be thoroughly investigated and appropriate action should be taken. The structure of measures against drug abuse by juveniles such as providing street guidance should be strengthened. Juveniles who have become drug users should be treated by measures that meet their needs, such as continued guidance and group meetings, to prevent recidivism. Sources of supply must be strictly controlled to prevent crimes of selling drugs that injure the welfare of children.

(3) Improving measures to prevent re-abuse by juveniles

At juvenile training schools, further improvements will be made in the systems for providing juveniles with "treatment program for specialized problems." In such programs juveniles who share a common problem (such as drug-related delinquency) are grouped together and are provided with continued guidance in the form of guidance curricula. For this purpose, guidance techniques will be studied; instructors will be trained; effective teaching materials will be developed; and the counselling system will be improved. Juveniles who are placed under probationary supervision following the commission of drug-related crimes or who are released on parole from juvenile training schools often go back to taking drugs due to their lack of resistance to drugs, easy access to drugs, or poor living conditions and/or family environment. Therefore, they should be given thorough education on the damage resulting from drug abuse so that they gain correct knowledge about drugs. Living condition and family situations should be improved and individual guidance should be provided to prevent a return to drug abuse. It is necessary to deepen the cooperation between related organizations such as medical institutions and self-help groups for drug dependent persons in order to improve guidance for preventing re-abuse. In addition, staff at related organizations such as the police, child consultation centers, medical institutions, health centers, and boards of education must make joint efforts to expand follow-up services for individual juveniles.

(4) Improving the consulting system of related organizations

Not only schools, but also local communities should provide staff and facilities where young people and their families can seek help when they encounter drug abuse problems. Everyone should be able to make use of such facilities at any time. Health centers, mental health and welfare centers, the police, narcotic control offices, child consultation centers, and welfare offices of local governments already have counselling contact points. Telephone cards with the telephone numbers of the major telephone counselling contact points of local governments will be distributed to junior high school students throughout the country. Information on counselling contact points will be published in periodicals for young people and posters will be posted to let them know of the availability of services and encourage them to use them when necessary. Linkages and cooperation between consulting organizations will be further promoted, for example by holding liaison meetings aimed at case studies and the exchange of information, so that staff can take appropriate action to help young people who visit them for consultations. About 19,000 people work to prevent stimulant drug abuse under the commission by prefectural governors, and councils will be organized nationwide to promote preventive and educational activities through cooperation with public consulting organizations. Short courses on preventive education and guidance will be held for volunteers. Thus, a variety of counselling services will be made available. At Juvenile Classification Homes, clinical psychology experts will provide consultations on drug problems to contribute to the sound growth of juveniles in local society.

(5) Publicity and education

To prevent the damages of drug abuse from reaching young people it is essential not only to raise young people's moral awareness, but also to obtain understanding and cooperation from families and local communities. Therefore, all kinds of mass media including TV, newspapers, and periodicals should be positively utilised to spread information about the current status of drug abuse and the locations of consulting organizations to foster people's awareness of the need to end drug abuse. Information about the actual state of drug abuse, hazards of drugs, and guidance techniques for preventing drug abuse will be provided to young people and people involved in education and guidance by taking advantage of the "No, Absolutely No!" campaign" conducted as part of the 10-year U.N. narcotic drug extermination project. This includes "Special Campaign Week for Preventing Drug Abuse (June - July)", "Drug Abuse Prevention Month for Juveniles (April)", and "Nationwide Month Against Juvenile Delinquency (July)," "Annual Crime Prevention Campaign (July)," "Narcotics and Stimulant Drug Danger Extermination Month (October - November)," and "Nationwide Month for Sound Growth of Juveniles."

Audiovisual teaching materials (such as educational video tapes, pamphlets containing drawings, tables, and cartoons, PR panels, games developed for small computers) will be improved since they are effective in educating young people. "Drug abuse prevention caravan cars," which are large buses that provide such educational materials and equipment, and "drug abuse prevention PR cars" will be operated nationwide.

Objective 2:To Strictly control groups engaged in illicit traffic, which consist of organized crime groups and some foreign undesirables, by implementing effective and efficient action against the increasingly sophisticated sales of illicit drugs.

1. Current status and problem

(1) Deep involvement of criminal organizations such as organized crime groups

(Illicit sales of drugs as a means of obtaining funds for criminal organizations)

Huge profits can be made selling drugs because of the enormous difference between the purchase price and street price. In addition, the addictive nature of drugs guarantees that there will be stable demand. Since the illicit sale of drugs involves multiple processes such as negotiations with overseas illegal manufacturers, smuggling, transportation within Japan, itemisation and illicit sales to end users, drug-related crimes are committed by organized criminal groups as a means of gaining funds for maintaining and expanding their organizations. In Japan, organized crime groups engage in illicit sales of drugs to obtain funds. In some cases, criminal groups belonging to different families do business with each other in order to smuggle and sell illegal drugs. This has contributed to the expansion of distribution routes. Recently, a trend in the widening of illicit sales route has been observed. For example, multiple illicit sales groups operating in a number of prefectures collaborate to purchase, wholesale, and retail drugs by making use of wide-area and rapid physical distribution services.

(Cooperation with overseas criminal groups)

Most drugs abused in Japan are smuggled in from overseas. China is regarded as the major source country for stimulant drugs. Japanese criminal groups smuggle drugs by using connections to drug-related criminal groups in Hong-Kong, Taiwan and so on. For this reason, drug crime is a typical aspect of international organized crime.

(2) Increasing illicit sales of drugs by foreign undesirables living in Japan

(Rapid increase in sales of illicit drug by foreign undesirables)

One of the recent characteristics of the drug problem is that illicit sales activities by foreign undesirables have been increasing rapidly, in addition to crime by organized criminal groups. 873 aliens were arrested for drug-related crimes in 1997, including 328 Iranians (who account for the largest percentage). For reference, the number of Iranians arrested for stimulant drug related crimes was 0 in 1991, and 1 in 1992, but increased rapidly to 220 in 1997. Unlike other foreigners other countries who are arrested for drug-related crimes, Iranian criminals are often characterised as possessing or selling for the purpose of making a profit, not just for the use of drugs. Previously, members of criminal groups were cautious about expanding the targets of illicit sales in order to prevent detection by investigative organizations. Therefore, ordinary citizens with no experience in drug abuse rarely had any opportunity to come into contact with drugs. Several years ago, foreign undesirables began selling drugs openly and indiscriminately near stations and on the streets. This brought about a revolutionary change in the form of final illicit sales, and made it easy for ordinary citizens to have access to drugs. This has been one of the major reasons for the increase in juvenile drug-related crime. It has been determined that these illicit dealers have recently been deepening their ties to criminal groups and other foreign undesirables for the purchase and sale of illegal drugs.

Investigation of organized crime by Iranians engenders a number of problems. Surveillance is difficult because they move often, live in large and closed groups, and speak in Persian. These characteristics make it difficult to obtain information from nearby residents. The activities of such groups, including their sources of drug supply and command routes related to illicit sales, have not been sufficiently analysed. Since investigative organizations have few staff who understand foreign languages (minority languages), they are often forced to employ external interpreters. In some cases, interpreters who are threatened by illicit sales groups refuse to accept the job. For this reason, it has been difficult to find a sufficient number of interpreters.

(Participation by foreigners who have overstayed their visas or entered the country illegally)

About 280,000 Asians and other foreigners who came to Japan to earn money have stayed illegally. It is suspected that a considerable number of foreigners have succeeded in entering Japan illegally. Therefore, it is estimated that a considerably large number of foreigners are illegally staying in Japan. It has been found that most of these foreigners are working illegally. The recent trend is towards an increasing number of nationalities with long-term stays, who disperse into rural areas. Cases of illegal entry using forged passports and obtaining residence through contrived marriages are occurring. At the same time, more illegal foreigners are being arrested for committing crimes. Thus, illegal foreigners are exerting an increasingly serious influence on all areas of society, and especially on public safety.

Illegal foreigners account for the largest part of the foreigners arrested for drug related crimes. Many of the Iranians participating in organized crimes mentioned above entered Japan pretending to be tourists, illegally stayed in Japan, in spite of gradually decreasing employment opportunities due to the economic recession, and began selling drugs. Iranians who began to sell drugs illicitly without leaving Japan at the expiration of their legal period of residence have gradually become organized, and they periodically move and expand their locations for illicit sales. Illegal Iranian organizations in different regions have gradually deepened relationships with each other and have begun to cooperate with members of Japanese criminal groups. Thus, related crime is becoming increasingly pernicious. Some criminals who were forcefully returned to their mother country by authorities on charges of illicit sales of drugs enter Japan again using forged passports and resume illicit sale of drugs in Japan.

(3) Subtle and clever methods of illicit sales

(Non-face-to-face illicit sales methods)

As described above, drug abuse is spreading even among ordinary citizens who previously had little relationship with existing drug-related criminal organizations, such as organized crime groups. Recent crimes include transactions between remote locations in which drugs are sent by mail and payments are deposited into bank accounts. These new methods are making it difficult to grasp the relationships between sellers and buyers. Conventional investigative methods are becoming inadequate for conducting investigations. So-called non-face-to-face illicit transactions were conducted before, but recent progress in communications has made such methods more ingenious. For example, illicit dealers often change the locations of transactions using cellular phones and pagers. This makes it difficult to identify suspects and crime scenes.

(Use of new means of communication such as cellular phones and PC communications)

Iranian drug dealers even trade their cellular phones amongst each other along with customer information (namely, relationships between drug crime organizations and customers). When one dealer is arrested or returned to Iran, drug transactions continue between the customers and the buyer of the cellular phone. Illicit sales organizations are maintained through this method. When a dealer who uses a cellular phone is arrested and his cellular phone is seized, another person belonging to the same organization can request the telephone company to transfer its number to another telephone, so that the same number can still be used. The relationship between organization and customers is these maintained through this number. This structural problem cannot be solved by investigative organizations alone.

Cases of illicit sale of drugs using PC communications began occurring around 1994. It is expected that drug abuse will expand through the wrongful use of communications equipment and communication networks. Information that encourages crime (such as ways to acquire and abuse drugs and incorrect information about pharmacological effects) can be disseminated via the Internet and PC communications, and this is difficult to control.

(Need to take appropriate measures against subtle methods of organized crime)

Drug related crime is a typical aspect of organized crime, in which a number of people contrive ways to prevent crimes from being detected and ways to destroy evidence and hide criminals based on conspiring in advance. Even when end sellers are arrested, it is increasingly difficult to obtain statements from them about high-level persons in criminal organizations, the status of their participation in crimes, and other information about organizations and their crimes. Increasingly subtle, clever methods are being used in drug-related crime, by utilising new technologies such as cellular phones and the Internet. In addition, new criminal groups such as foreign undesirables have appeared. Drug abuse is spreading even among ordinary citizens. For these reasons, it has become extremely difficult to investigate crimes of this type by depending entirely on conventional investigative methods. New measures must be established and implemented to eliminate drug crime.

(4) Increasing drugs diversity and increasing thefts of psychotropic drugs

(Diversifying drugs)

In terms of the number of persons arrested under drug control laws, stimulant drugs and paint thinner have been the major drugs abuse since the beginning of the 1970's. However, one recent trend indicates that besides stimulant drugs, many types of other drugs such as marijuana, cocaine, and MDMA are now being simultaneously traded by dealer and that many types of drugs are being abused by users. In 1997, more than 10 types of drugs were involved in psychotropic drug crimes. Some substances that are not currently placed under control, but have an hallucinogenic effect are being traded and used. Use of these drugs is being encouraged to some extent by information available from so-called drug books and the Internet.

It is important to accumulate data for analysis and to establish methods of analysis to cope with newly appearing, more diverse types of drugs, in order to establish structures to support investigations. If uncontrolled substances have harmful effects such as producing dependence or hallucinogens, their use can lead to abuse of controlled drugs. In some cases, these substances cannot be controlled promptly enough under international treaties such as the Convention on Psychotropic Substances.

(Thefts of psychotropic drugs)

Narcotics and psychotropic drugs that are essential for medical care are used in great quantities. Licensing systems have been applied to production, importation, distribution, sales, and prescription of these drugs to prevent them from being distributed by illegal routes, with controlled facilities placed under supervision. These methods have been considerably effective in preventing legally distributed drugs from escaping into illegal channels. However, since 1993 an increasing number of thefts of psychotropic drugs have been reported to the Ministry of Health and Welfare in compliance with the Narcotic and Psychotropic Drug Control Law. Thefts from medical institutions account for most of these. In 1996, a case occurred in which stolen drugs were sold on a national scale via PC communications. Since more and more medical uses for narcotics such as morphine are being used for cancer patients to relieve acute pain, complete control of narcotics for medical use is becoming a very important issue.

2. Preventive Measures

(1) Measures for preventing organized crime and depriving illicit proceeds

(Positive use of investigative techniques for organized crime and enhancement of legal systems)

To combat drug trafficking, it is not enough simply to seize drugs and arrest low-level members of drug crime organizations. It is essential to arrest the key personnel of such criminal organizations. For this purpose, efforts should be made to uncover criminals falling under Section 8 of the Anti-Drug Special Law, which imposes severe punishment to members of drug dealing organizations and severe punishments on the illicit sales of drugs conducted professionally. Efforts should be made to analyse and eliminate entire organizations by making effective use of investigative techniques such as controlled delivery. However, conventional investigative techniques cannot be expected to be effective in revealing the full particulars of such crimes, in view of the circumstances of organized drug-related crime. There is a need to introduce a system for intercepting telecommunications, widely used in drug crimes, and a bill related to this has been submitted to the Diet.

(Greater efforts to deprive illicit proceeds and analyse information supplied by financial organizations)

To stamp out organized drug-related crime, it is important to cut off the sources of funding of criminal groups by appropriately depriving them of illicit proceeds, which is the objective of their existence and their source of power. For this purpose, efforts will be made to completely deprive crime groups of illicit proceeds by making positive use of the Anti-Drug Special Law, which has provisions for, punishment of the concealment and disguise of illicit proceeds related to drug crime, confiscation of illicit proceeds including intangibles, and freezing measures for confiscation and value-based confiscation.

It is necessary to discover illicit proceeds in the funds handled by financial organizations and to trace them in order for investigations to deprive criminal groups of illicit proceeds. Until now, the Anti-Drug Special Law has obligated financial organizations to report any transactions that are suspected to involve illicit proceeds to the supervisory authorities. At present, a bill that includes stipulations to assign the functions of a financial information unit (FIU) to the Financial Supervisory Authority has been submitted to the Diet. The FIU will be responsible for accumulating, organizing, and analysing related information and supplying it to investigative organizations as necessary.

(2) Thorough control aimed at eliminating illicit sales organizations made up of foreigners such as Iranians

(Establishment of investigative techniques to use against foreigner crime organizations)

The drug crime organizations such as Iranian groups did not come to Japan from abroad with intention to extend their market. They have gradually organized themselves during their stay in Japan. Since their history in Japan is still short, it should be possible to eliminate these groups thoroughly controlling them, before they take firm root in Japan. For this reason, techniques used against foreign criminal organizations will be reviewed, and efforts will be made to obtain information about such organizations and to collect evidence to uncover the actual state of illicit sales organizations made up with Iranians and other foreigners. Particular care will be directed to collecting information on cooperative relationships between organized crime groups and foreign illicit sales groups and to arrest related criminals. The interpreter structure that supports investigations will be improved by emphasising language education within investigative organizations and by securing interpreters from the private sector. Furthermore, the structure for exchange of information with overseas investigative organizations and cooperating with them in investigations will be improved. Prompt action will be taken against movements such as smuggling by keeping track of activities of foreigner criminal organizations.

(Stricter control of illegal entry and illegal overstaying of visas)

It is necessary to strengthen controls against illegal entry and illegal overstaying of visas in conjunction with investigations to eliminate foreign criminal organizations in order to prevent expansion of illegal sales organizations. For this purpose, the structure used for landing examinations will be improved, and deportation procedures will be implemented promptly for illegally overstaying foreigners. Efforts will thus be made to steadily decrease illegal entrants and foreigners remaining illegally.

(3) Emphasis on control for end users

In some countries, drug users are not regarded as criminals, but are instead viewed as patients. These countries are beginning to decriminalise drug use and drug possession for personal consumption. In Japan, drug abuse has been strictly controlled as a crime under the moral attitude that "Drug abuse is evil," even during the first period of stimulant drug abuse in the early 1950s. In view of the fact that the moral attitude to refuse to use drugs is declining among some people, individual control organizations will grant priority to controlling drug users and take necessary and appropriate actions as one of the major countermeasures against drug abuse.

(4) Action against subtle and clever illicit sales methods

Various measures must be taken to cope with illicit sales of drugs and distribution of illegal information using new means of communications such as cellular phones and the Internet. For example, action should be taken to prevent transfers of telephone numbers of seized cellular phones to other telephones and to control distribution of drug information that encourages crimes via PC communications or the Internet. Countermeasures appropriate for new means of telecommunications must be taken by obtaining cooperation from frequently used carriers and providers. It is important to discover pernicious information distributed via computer networks quickly to prevent drug-related crime. An investigative team equipped with the latest computer technology will be established to enable complete analysis of drug crime using computer networks and to provide appropriate punishments for such offenses. Also, efforts will be made to establish the structure needed to rapidly exchange information on drug crime with foreign investigative organizations.

(5) Countermeasures against drug diversification and strict supervision of legal distribution

To cope with the spread of psychotropic drug and hallucinogen use among drug users, educational activities will be carried out, (for example by supplying information about their hazards) to increase society's awareness. Personnel engaged in medical care will be asked to cooperate further in ensuring appropriate handling of drugs. Investigative organizations will improve testing functions by developing analysis techniques, installing equipment, and raising the quality of examination officers (through study at institutions in Japan and overseas) to cope with increasing drug diversity. Also, a database will be constructed to be used for identifying legally distributed pharmaceuticals such as psychotropic drugs and seized drugs. For drugs not controlled by international treaties, Japan will consider controlling them as deemed necessary if they are at least equivalent to currently controlled substances in terms of dependence and danger.

For psychotropic drugs that are sometimes illegally distributed by theft etc., more accurate guidance will be provided to medical institutions, pharmacies, and wholesalers to ensure appropriate management. Also, control manuals will be prepared and distributed to increase awareness on the part of related staff. In view of the spread of home medical care, manuals on narcotic drugs for medical use will be prepared for pharmacies to inform them of the need for appropriate controls.

Objective 3:To interdict smuggling at the border and promote international cooperation, including support for measures in illicit drug production areas

1. Current status and problem

(1) Increase in drug smuggling

Since the domestic production of drugs is under strict control, most stimulants and other drugs abused in Japan are brought in from abroad. In recent years, a large amount of drugs have been confiscated at the border. This increased drug smuggling, which supports expanding domestic demand for drugs from the supply side, poses a grave problem.

(2) Increase in illicit production and abuse of stimulants

In the first period of stimulant drug abuse, stimulants (methamphetamine) were produced in Japan, but they were virtually eradicated thorough strict controls. Later, South Korea and Taiwan played major roles in the illicit production and smuggling of the drugs to Japan in the 1970's and 1980's, respectively, but plants illicitly manufacturing drugs were almost rooted out. In their place, illicit production of drugs increased in China in the 1990's. Today, more than 90% of drugs interdicted at the border are from China. The Chinese authorities are putting a great deal of effort into controlling of laboratories that illicitly manufacture drugs and have already detected a significant number of laboratories, but have not yet rooted them all out. In 1997, a plot was uncovered in which a large quantity of methamphetamine thought to have been transported from China was smuggled to Japan by a North Korean ship.

In the late 1990's, production of stimulants started in the Golden Triangle of Myanmar, Thailand, and Laos - known for illicit production of heroin - as well as in surrounding areas and in the Philippines. At the same time, the abuse of stimulants, which used to be a problem specific to Japan, is spreading to other countries. Thus, in South Korea, the Philippines, and Thailand, metamphetamine abuse is becoming a major drug problem.

In this way, the problem of stimulants in Japan is one part of the larger drug problem in Asia. It is hoped that Asian countries will take effective measures against drugs while exercising controls that can deal quickly with new illicit manufacturing sites and drug trafficking routes.

(3) Illegal distribution of precursors

It is believed that the illegal international distribution of precursors exists behind the international drug supply. According to the International Narcotics Control Board (INCB), precursors for the illicit manufacture of 6 billion doses of stimulants (methamphetamine) were confiscated (or their shipments were stopped) worldwide between September and December 1994. Today, one third of the Asian countries are still not parties to the international treaty that controls precursors of stimulants. In fact, some countries have not established relevant domestic legislation even among participants. Since it is difficult to trace the illegal international distribution of raw materials, measures should be taken quickly to prevent it.

(4) Growing scale and subtlety of smuggling

Due to the expansion of domestic trafficking routes, development of technology, and the like, there is a marked tendency for criminal organizations to try to smuggle "large quantities of drugs" by "hard-to-detect methods."

(Trends in methods of smuggling)

Along with the expansion of domestic trafficking routes, smuggling cases using commercial cargo vessels are increasing in volume. Illicit drugs have recently been confiscated repeatedly on the scale of tens of kilograms. Methods of concealment are also becoming more intricate. For example, drugs are being hidden in heavy cargo that is difficult to inspect, and in one case inside hollow Buddhist statues.

With the expansion of the lower end of drug abusers, drugs are often smuggled by apparently ordinary air passengers. Methods are getting increasingly intricate in smuggling cases in which criminal organization seems to be involved, in addition to the growth in scale. For example, drugs are smuggled in from South East Asia after having been swallowed by Caucasian couriers, or female office workers used as couriers.

Recently, attempts to smuggle drugs, mainly psychotropic-substances, through international postal services has been growing sharply. It appears that smugglers consider this an effective means of avoiding penalties.

(Frequent occurrence of smuggling cases at local ports or closed ports)

Cases of drug smuggling by ships' crews occur repeatedly at local ports where control over smuggling is relatively lax. An increasing number of illicit trafficking is now being conducted at sea, which used to protect Japan from the inflow of drugs. Illicit traffic by sea is an extremely vicious method that makes it possible to smuggle a large quantity of illicit drugs by slipping through the law enforcement barrier. In this method, a foreign cargo ship delivers illicit drugs directly to a Japanese receiver boat at sea; or a foreign cargo ship drops packed illicit drugs with a float attached to it into the sea, and later a Japanese receiver boat recovers it and transfers it to Japanese mainland via isolated islands, local ports, or the like.

2. Measures

In dealing with drug abuse, it is crucial to prevent the supply of drugs as well as to suppress the illegal demand and distribution of drugs at home. To do this, smuggling must be interdicted by thorough law enforcement at the border. With this in mind, law enforcement agencies are making a concerted effort to uncover smuggling, with good results. More than 60% of the drugs and about 70% of the stimulants confiscated in Japan is interdicted at the border. The fact that the abuse of stimulants is becoming worse indicates that significant amounts of stimulants are being smuggled into Japan. Therefore, it is necessary to strengthen information gathering and to reinforce drug law enforcement operation system for eradication of smuggling.

The background of the problem of drug smuggling in Japan lies in the worldwide problem of drug abuse. For the fundamental solution of our domestic drug problems, we must promote international cooperation, including the eradication of the illicit production and distribution of drugs in foreign counties and areas.

(1) Strengthen the system of information gathering about smuggling, etc.

For effective control over smuggling cases, which are becoming larger and more subtle and whose routes are increasingly diversified, relevant regulatory bodies should work together to clarify the methods and routes of smuggling and to identify criminal organizations in an effort to foresee the movements of such criminal organizations. To do this, the following approaches are needed, in addition to the gathering and analysing of information on past cases and measures against organized crime described in Objective 2.

(Strengthen information gathering from private citizens)

In gathering and analyzing information on smuggling, it is important to strengthen cooperation not only among relevant law enforcement agencies, but also with various private organizations. Specifically, we will work with private citizens to gather information on smuggling widely through toll-free calls. We will also expand and strengthen cooperation through the conclusion of the Memoranda of Understanding, assignment of cooperative personnel and so forth in order to gather information on suspicious cargo from international freighters and information on suspicious vessels or persons from fishery cooperatives at local ports or isolated islands.

(Strengthen the gathering of international information)

In the field of drug law enforcement against smuggling, it is important to strengthen cooperation between law enforcement agencies in foreign countries and areas, such as cooperation for rapid exchange of information. We will promote the gathering of information on smuggling through the WCO (World Customs Organization), such as information on the past cases disclosure of drug smuggling. The WCO gathers such information from member countries and areas, organizes it, and distributes it. However, there are problems in that some countries do not provide information quickly, for example. We will urge these countries to provide information to the WCO rapidly in order to strengthen the information gathering system. The Asia-Pacific Training Seminar on Maritime Drug Law Enforcement, which was organized by UNDCP, proposed establishing an information exchange network on maritime drug law enforcement. Japan will make the necessary contributions in order to establish this network and utilize it effectively.

(Establish network for Signature analysis)

Since the synthesis processes, reaction conditions, and raw materials used for stimulants and the like vary by organization and area of illicit manufacture, it is possible to infer (through signature analysis) the area of illicit manufacture and the like from trace impurities, by-products, etc. contained in confiscated drugs. This provides meaningful information for countermeasures against smuggling. Currently, studies in this field are conducted in several countries, including by the UNDCP and Japan, and are being applied to actual investigations. Since the accuracy of inference could be increased with the accumulation of data, we will develop this into a more effective technique by means of data sharing through construction of a network with investigative organs and research institutes of the United Nations and the countries concerned.

(Enhance measures against import and export of raw materials)

We will encourage Asian and other countries to sign the 1988 Vienna Convention that calls for controlling raw materials for drugs. Also, we will continue to cooperate with the INCB, which calls for the establishment of domestic legislation, and with the USA and the EU, which are promoting measures for dealing with raw materials for drugs. We will promote information exchange and sharing with INCB, the USA, etc. and strive to grasp international trends in the illicit manufacture of drugs. We will strive to properly implement the system of advance notice (which requires an advance notice to be sent to the government of an importing country) through international cooperation, so that it will serve as an effective measure against illicit manufacture of drugs.

(2) Tighten controls over smuggling

The following approaches are needed in order to build a system for smuggling control that can reliably prevent smuggling based on available information.

(Reinforcement of system of controls)

We will deploy personnel for smuggling control so as to respond quickly to changes in smuggling risks and will constantly review their deployment. For that purpose, we will strengthen border control operations to correspond to the risk of smuggling at local ports and the like. Considering the frequent occurrence of illicit trafficking by sea in recent years, we will strengthen surveillance in sea areas around isolated islands and local ports that are likely to conduct illicit traffic by sea. Furthermore, we will conduct joint operations actively with related law enforcement agencies while building a mutual support system within each law enforcement agency to make it possible to put the required manpower into high-risk targets of control.

(Improvement of equipment)

We will strive to achieve the necessary buildup and deployment of drug-sniffing dogs and X-ray equipment (which are useful in controlling air passengers and commercial cargo), surveillance camera systems (which are effective for control over seaports), and equipment and materials for maritime drug law enforcement. We will also promote research and development of such equipment.

(Utilization of controlled delivery)

We will make active use of controlled delivery in close cooperation with the bodies concerned, to deal properly with crimes that use international postal services and the like. With the aim of revealing and eradicating drug trafficking routes, we will identify and round up all persons involved in the trafficking of drugs into Japan from abroad.

(3) Prevent the international supply of illicit drugs

The following approaches are needed in order to prevent illicit production and illegal distribution of drugs, which are international activities involving Asian and other countries and areas.

(Cooperation with Asian and other countries and areas)

In order to cut off the supply of drugs into Japan, it is important that effective law enforcement be introduced in countries and areas from which the stimulants are shipped. Cooperation with Asian and other countries and areas in the field of law enforcement will be effective in eliminating sources of drug supplies. Such actions will also be welcomed by the international community as a timely measure of international contribution. We will hold seminars and workshops, instruct trainees, and gather drug-related information in the Golden Triangle and neighbor countries (Myanmar, Thailand, Laos, China, Cambodia, and Vietnam), thereby strengthening cooperation with the law enforcement agencies of these countries. We will also help improve the skills of law enforcement personnel in Asian countries and areas through projects for the improvement of maritime drug law enforcement skills, projects for customs technical cooperation, and other training activities.

(Strengthen cooperation with international organizations)

International measures against drugs are undertaken by the INCB, WHO (World Health Organization), WCO, and the ICPO, etc. with the UNDCP at the center. Japan will continue and further enhance cooperation with these organizations in personnel as well as financial aspects. The Regional Information Liaison Office (RILO), which was established as part of WCO's regional cooperation to gather, analyze, and distribute information on illegal drugs (cases at the border), etc. in the Asia and Pacific region, is to be moved to Japan in 1999. With this as a turning point, we will cooperate actively to further enhance its activities.

(Promote international cooperation through ODA scheme)

Japan has abundant experience in and knowledge about countermeasures against stimulants, including our success in suppressing large-scale stimulant abuse in the mid-1950's. This experience covers such diverse fields as legislation, regulatory systems, measures for dealing with precursors, educational activities for prevention of drug abuse, and medical treatment for intoxication caused by stimulants and the like. Japan also has experience in research, technological development in these fields. We intend to provide our knowledge through key organizations in each field to Asian countries which faces problems of drug abuse. Specifically, we will prepare and provide, in foreign languages, our experience of countermeasures against stimulants and medical knowledge of drug intoxication, training system of administrative officers, drug control officers, forensic chemists, and medical personnel, and provide educational materials at key organizations (government offices, law enforcement agencies, universities, colleges, institutes, laboratories, etc.), based on mainly the request of Asian countries and areas. We will clearly express to the international community our intentions for international cooperation in the field of countermeasures against stimulants by organizing overall international cooperation activities via ODA as an "International Cooperation Program for Prevention of Drug Abuse.

Objective 4:To support the rehabilitation of drug intoxicated persons and prevent them from relapsing into drug abuse

1. Current status and problem

(1) Actual status of drug dependence and intoxication

(High recidivism rate for drug-related crimes)

One of the major characteristics of drug-related crimes is their high recidivism rate. Of persons arrested for violation of the Stimulants Control Law, the proportion of repeaters (i.e., the recidivism rate) stood above 50% after 1985, when the peak of the second period of stimulant drug abuse ended. Although the recidivism rate fell below 50% after 1995 due to an increase in the number of new juvenile intoxicated persons, the actual number of repeaters increased. The high recidivism rate for drug-related crimes, which is a issue that must be addressed before dismissing the effectiveness of penalties, can be explained by the fact that abused drugs, to one degree or another, share the common characteristic of forming dependence in the abuser. This consequently causes the abuser to be dominated by a far greater desire for drugs than s/he can control.

(Danger of drug intoxication)

Drug intoxicated persons (patients in dangerous states due to the intake of drugs) may have hallucinations or delusions. In many serious crimes, including murders, the culprits have been stimulant intoxicated persons (examples include the 1954 kidnap and murder of little Kyoko, the 1981 Tokyo Fukagawa phantom killing, and the 1993 Shinkansen murder). It is known that symptoms persist after the patient stops taking stimulants and that even if they seem to have disappeared, they may recur suddenly (recrudescence or flash back). This indicates that continued medical control over intoxicated persons is necessary.

(2) Treatment of drug dependence and rehabilitation of patients

(Drug dependence with no sure treatment)

It is difficult to cure drug dependence (the condition in which the patient cannot stop taking drugs by will power alone) completely, even if symptoms of intoxication disappear after treatment in a medical institution. As matters stand today, the mechanism of dependence on stimulants and other drugs has still not been fully elucidated, and no guaranteed treatment method has been medically established. What helps most at present is a comprehensive approach aimed at breaking off connections to drugs and establishing a daily life free of drugs while suppressing the craving for drugs. This includes, for example, isolation from drugs, termination of personal relations associated with the use of drugs, a well-regulated life, counselling that makes these approaches possible, and psychotherapy. Therefore, drug intoxicated persons need not only medical care, but also organic links in every area including family life, education, drug control, health, and welfare. Studies into effective approaches have just begun.

(Rehabilitation of drug intoxicated persons)

Since drug dependence is extremely difficult to cure, it goes without saying that the most effective approach is to never use drugs in the first place. However, once dependence is formed as a result of drug abuse, it is necessary to remove or at least reduce dependence and prevent a relapse into drug use, i.e., to provide aftercare and support rehabilitation. Analyses of cases of drug dependence indicate that drug abuse has extremely serious effects on the family and professional lives of patients. Many patients get divorced after drug abuse, for example. These effects in turn make the rehabilitation of intoxicated persons more difficult. Since most drug users start using drugs by being tempted by drug abusers, support for rehabilitation is important not only for preventing them from personally relapsing into drug abuse, but also to prevent people from becoming drug abusers.

2. Measures

Since it is important to make drug intoxicated persons break away from drug use and the daily habits associated with it, we will prevent intoxicated persons from relapsing into drug abuse by taking the following approaches to treatment and rehabilitation in medical institutions, correctional institutions, regions, etc.

(1) Enhance treatment of intoxicated persons

(Improve medical care system)

In order to enhance the treatment of patients intoxicated with stimulants and the like, we will continue to improve the medical care system. In cases of toxic psychosis (in patients who develop psychotic episodes, such as hallucinations or delusions, as a result of acute or chronic intake of drugs) caused by stimulants and the like, we should improve the environment of medical care facilities, taking into consideration the modes of symptom formation and characteristics of individual patients. Therefore, we will make improvements in facilities. For example, we will create a better system of emergency medical attention for patients suffering from acute intoxication and provide hospital beds specifically for treatment of toxic psychotics. Also, we will expand training in drug dependence for doctors and extend suitable opportunities for training to nursing staff as well. If a patient display irrational behavior, we will take appropriate measures, and seek cooperation from regulatory bodies as required.

(Promote studies on drug dependence and toxic psychosis and gather information)

If the mechanism of development of drug dependence and toxic psychosis could be elucidated at the molecular level, it would open the door to curing drug dependence and to dealing with recrudescence (flash backs), which are considered to be extremely difficult. Therefore, we will provide further support for basic research in relevant fields with the aim of establishing an infallible cure that is more reliable than development of therapeutic agents. As the first country to experience stimulant abuse after World War II, Japan has accumulated more study results on toxic psychosis than any other country. Consequently, we will actively provide these study results and other relevant information to Asian countries faced with the threat of toxic psychosis.

(2) Support systems for rehabilitation of drug intoxicated persons

Support systems for rehabilitation of drug intoxicated persons can take various forms, which range from the treatment of drug-related problems in correctional institutions to volunteer activities for supporting the social life of drug intoxicated persons. It is important to promote corresponding measures and activities for each of these forms.

(Correctional institutions)

We will study methods of treatment which would allow for counselling according to the characteristics of the correctional institutions and will enhance studies to prepare competent instructors. In the education of inmates for the prevention of drug abuse, we will instruct them to realize the antisocial nature of drug dependence as well as its harm to health, to repent days of drug abuse seriously; and thereby make them firmly determine to give up drugs. We will develop teaching materials for these purposes and provide correctional institutions with them. At the same time, we will improve systems for consultation, including interviews by instructors and by volunteers to remove the causes of drug dependence. We will implement similar measures in juvenile reformatories.

(Probationary supervision)

Drug offenders who are on parole or who are placed under probationary supervision with a suspended execution of sentence often relapse into drug abuse due to lack of resistance to drug abuse, due to association with drug abusers, and/or due to a disorderly life. Therefore, we will try to stabilize their lives and prevent them from relapsing into drug abuse by providing them vocational guidance, aiding their families, etc. while furthering education on the effect of drug abuse.

(Enhance regional consultation services)

On a regional level, measures are needed to discover and deal with drug dependence at an early stage (consultation, guidance, education, treatment, etc.) as well as to provide aftercare to drug intoxicated persons and support rehabilitation with an eye to preventing relapse into drug abuse. To that end, we will facilitate the use of consultation services at police stations, regional narcotics control offices, public health centers, mental health and welfare centers, consultation offices for children, welfare offices, and other public offices by making their contact addresses more widely known. Additionally, we will establish regional networks for consultation and counselling about drug dependence with mental health and welfare centers at the core, and ensure cooperation among relevant organizations. Furthermore, we will enhance the training of personnel engaged in consultation services and utilize human resources including public officers and volunteers who promote the prevention of drug abuse.

(Voluntary efforts at freedom from drug dependence)

For the rehabilitation of drug dependent persons, it is important for them to make a clean break from drugs and establish a well-regulated self-supporting life that is free of drugs. It has been demonstrated in foreign countries that communal living in a dormitory has a good effect. It is important that the community as a whole should positively support the voluntary activities organized by drug addicts with the aim of freeing themselves from drug dependence and resuming their place in society.