As the state’s drug squad commander, it causes him sleepless nights. As a father, it breaks his heart.

Detective Superintendent Tony Cooke has witnessed first-hand the devastating impact ice is having on today’s younger generation. It frustrates him that so many teenagers downplay its risks, even over a short period of use.

“Kids who should be getting ready for some of their brightest, most enjoyable years are getting hooked on Ice, and it is controlling them. They find themselves in drug squats, in psychiatric wards and in detention centres, when they should be at school, work or university.

He added: “Young people need to understand that Ice not only destroys your physical appearance, your brain, your relationships and your bank account. It destroys your dreams.

One of the main strategies in the fight against ice is halting the availability of pre-cursor chemicals used to manufacture it, according to State Crime Commander, Assistant Commissioner Mark Jenkins.

“The unique challenge with combating the supply of Ice and other amphetamine-type-substances is that we are fighting the war on many fronts. Unlike heroin and cocaine, which are not produced in Australia, Ice is both imported and manufactured locally.

“Keeping track of pre-cursor chemicals, many of which are imported legally, is one of our major priorities. Considering these chemicals are sold across the nation, and are easily transported from state to state, we’re working closely with other jurisdictions and government agencies to combat this issue.”

Henry Sapiecha