Everyone knows the North-east, like many places, has a serious drugs problem. Lives have been lost, families torn apart and communities blighted by the impact of heroin and cocaine.
But what many people don’t know is just how the problem went from nowhere to an epidemic in the space of just two tear-stained decades.
Our Impact investigations team now brings you a special hour-long audio story that tracks the History of Drugs in Aberdeen and its surrounding areas from 1980 to 2000.
Aberdeen drug history podcast – what is in it?
You will hear that in the 1980s there was little in the way of hard drugs circulating Aberdeen until one man – Brian Beattie – arrived on the scene, making a fortune from peddling heroin before his empire ended in ignominy and murder at Kincorth’s The Covenanter pub.
The introduction of ecstasy
You will also hear how, as the 1990s arrived, ecstasy flooded nightclubs and brought with it the opportunity for dealers to make big money which meant protecting their trade with violence and intimidation.
One such gangster was Ronnie Cormack. In this special audio story you will hear from the detectives who finally brought him down, smashing his multi-million pound empire, seizing guns and drugs in the process.
Our story then focuses on the biggest drugs operation ever mounted by Grampian Police. Operation Haven ended with the arrest and jailing of Glasgow drugs baron James Hamill who had flooded our communities with heroin.
The arrival of crack cocaine
Finally, the Aberdeen drug history podcast sweeps to the end of the 90s and into the 2000s, mapping out the arrival of crack cocaine while hearing from those people who watched relatives die and saw their communities ruined by the now ingrained drugs problem.
The inside story on the north-east financial adviser, who stole £13 million from hundreds of his own clients.