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We talk to a student drug dealer about business and morals

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Do you deal cannabis?

Yeah I have done.

Some would say what you're doing is immoral. What do you think?

I could tell you several horror stories about drugs… But if I'm selling psychedelics it would depend very much also on what they're used to. I would not want to give them something they'd have a bad time on, for example, and so I'd want to make sure I weigh them almost their own personal dose.

But it's still wrong isn't it?

I'd definitely want to have a chat with each person. I think it would just be irresponsible not to, really. I just try to give them a few words of advice beforehand, you know, don't make any irrational decisions whilst you're on it.

I wouldn't sell smack, for example, or heroin. That's not my cup of tea at all.

Hallucinogens?

A bit, from time to time. Just me and my mates really. It does have a bit of a better of a profit margin, but in some ways I consider it to be just easier. It's more fun, it's better value. I think a lot of people find dealing quite addictive in a lot of ways actually. It's an adrenaline rush for some people. For others, it is purely economical, and they do just need the money. It's definitely been a mixture of the two at times.

Cannabis in particular is very much built around friendship networks, especially in drug dealing. Well, maybe not friendship groups -- they may not like each other per say -- but there's people they'd rather do business with than others, so they'll choose their preference.

Is it different to a normal business relationship, in that buyers come to you?

Yeah, very much. Yeah, it's completely backwards in some ways…

I wouldn't necessarily want to invest that much of my own cash in it, and have to invest that much of my time.

How would you be affected by the legalisation of cannabis?

I definitely think it should be decriminalised at the least, and if it was legalised I'd love to open up a little coffee shop somewhere, sell coffee, and let people chill out and maybe have a couple of joints.

And I'd still say that adrenaline rush would be there, but it wouldn't be about criminality, it would be more about the adrenaline rush of 'Oh my god I'm setting up a business'.

How do you deal with the money?

A lot of money can be spent cash in hand, on things people would never check up on. Like, buying a TV, and then with the legitimate savings on the books as well, maybe paying for a car.

What kind of volumes have you bought in the past?

The price cuts down a lot depending on how much you buy. I tended to get in with another mate who's buying a big order at the same time, so I'd be able to get it at the discount prices. So I didn't often invest actually a huge amount of capital to do that. But I have done in the past. I did buy probably about five to nine ounces in a go, then restocking every other day, every three days.

And in terms of cash flow?

Maybe if you end up going a bit over, you'll go oh OK, maybe can tick you this month, if you know the person well enough, and like you'll have a conversation with him saying it'll take me this long. And a lot of the time, most people will be quite chilled about it, depending on how well you know the person.

Isn't that very dangerous?

The vast majority will not tick unless they know you, and you've bought smalls from them. But a lot of people will tick thousands of pounds worth of MDMA or cocaine, but a lot of people won't because it's very dangerous. I've had friends who have moved around the country to try and avoid the ability to be found by people whilst they try and find the money. You can get into quite serious trouble with some people.

What affects your price?

Different cities do vary significantly. The biggest contributor to price tends to be how much 'competition' there is. If the police are particularly active then it's more common for people just keep it a bit more quiet and to change their dealing style or locations. If there has been a raid it may be dry for a couple of days. If a city is a 'grow city' then it tends to be cheaper. London tends to be more expensive. This could be due to London being more expensive to live in so needing a greater mark up, as a sort of London waiting as it were. But also to a much lesser extent things like accessibility factor in - is there a dock? Is it small enough to stay under the radar?

Do you use product differentiation?

I have definitely done that in the past, and known a lot of people to do that in the past, although what I find is that a lot of people can get tired doing that, and one doesn't sell so well, and so they just end up stocking on one, which will end up just being a nicer one. A lot of the time it tends to be more negotiated around who they feel comfortable doing their business with.

Do you want to move up the food chain?

Nah, it seems like it would be too much work. And I want to do more with my life than just drugs, to be honest. There's definitely more to life than drugs.

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2 Comment

a real drug dealer Posted on Friday 19 Jul 2019

Do u sell more smack or more heroin? Interesting to compare these two very different products.

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KUSH Posted on Friday 19 Jul 2019

London/Birmingham weed is half the price of weed in york, your 'dealer' is right about the effect of competition on prices, but london is not expensive for weed at all, a bag costs PS25 in York, and costs me PS10-15 in London, perhaps (bluntly put) the 'dealer' who your interviewing is white could explain why he might be paying more in London than in York

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