Vulnerable addicts are being pressured to eat faeces for laughs by young Liverpool drug dealers who are themselves victims of exploitation by hardened gangsters.
Shocking stories have emerged from the violent underworld of county-lines dealing, where youths are groomed by hardened city criminals and often forced to sell drugs in smaller towns or rural areas, where there is less competition from rival gangs.
The children, as young as seven according to some reports, are often given cannabis without having to pay up front and quickly rack up large debts to older gangsters.
They are then told the debt can only be worked off by dealing in locations many miles from their home, where sometimes deadly clashes with other county lines gangs can occur.
While the dealers are often victims of Child Criminal Exploitation (CCE), troubling incidents also involve those in the grips of heroin or crack cocaine addiction.