Amphetamines are commonly known as speed or go-eey in New Zealand. They belong to a group of drugs called ‘psychostimulants' (also commonly known as ‘speed') that stimulate the central nervous system. Amphetamines speed up the messages going to and from the brain to the body.
Most amphetamines are produced in backyard laboratories and sold illegally. It usually appears as a whitish yellow powder, and occasionally in liquid form.
Most amphetamines sold illegally contain a mixture of pure amphetamines and other substances such as sugar, glucose, bicarbonate of soda and ephedrine. These additives can be highly poisonous. They can cause collapsed veins, tetanus, abscesses and damage to the heart, lungs, liver and brain. And because the user doesn't know whether they are using 5 per cent or 50 per cent pure amphetamines, it is easy to overdose by accident.