Enhancement of the capacity of forensic laboratory personnel in the Identification of Illicit Drugs in seizures and in biological specimens.

Implementing Organization
United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

This 5-day course provides hands-on training and practical laboratory exercises for drug identification. Using real samples and following the normal cycle of a sample in a forensic laboratory: from sample reception, chain of custody, documentation of sample characteristics, sampling and qualitative analysis to the interpretation of results and issuance of certificates of analysis. Students will learn about preliminary and screening methods, such as colour tests, FTIR, Raman and GC-FID. They will also confirm their identification using GC-MS. The course covers the essential laboratory skills required for sample preparation, sequence running, and data analysis. Finally, students will be introduced to quantitative analysis using HPLC 

Accomplishments to Date

8 officers from 22 countries received training in 2023 

Project Activities

Upon completing the course, participants will have a solid foundation in laboratory drug identification and analysis, including safety, sample handling, qualitative and quantitative analysis, and basic instrument maintenance. 

Global Level Outcomes

Member States have enhance capacity to identify drugs and precursor chemicals, generate scientific data of high quality leading to better informed decisions in court, greater understanding of the causes of harm in toxicology cases and more effective national and international policy decisions 

National Level Outcomes

Forensic service providers have enhanced capacity in the understanding and laboratory identification of controlled drugs, precursor chemicals used in their manufacture and new psychoactive substances as measured by pre and post training questionnaires as well as post-training technical support

Current State Participation

In 2023, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka with training in 2024 available for up to 10 countries


Conor Crean, Scientific Affairs Officer Laboratory and Scientific Services (DPA) (UNODC) P.O. Box 500, A-1400 Vienna, Austria Fax: (43-1) 26060 5967 Telephone: (43-1) 26060 4120 E-mail:unodc-lab [at] un [dot] org (unodc-lab[at]un[dot]org)