The report shows that the trade in narcotics has changed since Brå’s last studies of the illegal market (Brå 2005:12, Brå 2007:4, Brå 2007:7). Three overall changes have been identified.
Drug smuggling to Sweden
This study shows that the contacts between Swedish criminal networks and actors in other countries have, in recent years, been facilitated by new organisational patterns. Smuggling has been streamlined due to the relocation of Swedish organisers in key transit countries. The drug supply chain has been shortened, and the opportunity to import narcotics is open to a broader range of criminal networks than before. Larger consignments are being imported – mainly with the help of legal companies working in the freight industry.
Increasing ambition among criminal networks to control local street markets in certain suburban areas
Previously, such territorial claims were regarded as unusual. Today, however, they have both a practical and symbolic significance. The competition for “ownership” of certain streets and locations entails a greater level of conflict, and networks in major towns expanding and dispersing their activities to other locations in Sweden.
Accessibility for buyers
New online sales platforms have been established (on Darknet and open internet sites), while social media and encrypted apps have simplified customer recruitment and marketing for street dealers. Certain delivery methods have become more common in recent years, such as home delivery and postal delivery. These delivery methods and sales forms enable people – without prior contacts with dealers – to buy illegal drugs without being detected by the judicial system.