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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Drug mule’s world comes to an end

Police arrest 21-year-old suspect, seize RM50,000 worth of drugs

KUCHING: He had been living the high life as a drug mule, making up to thousands of ringgit a month by simply picking up packages and delivering them to his ‘boss’.His world, however, came to an abrupt halt on Monday when police arrested him and seized a package containing RM50,000 worth of drugs.

State anti-narcotics chief Supt Moses Agat said the 21-year-old unemployed man was detained at his house at Tabuan Heights here around 11am following a tip off from a member of the public, moments after he had collected a package from the post office.

“The suspect was paid RM200 for each delivery made, and our initial investigations showed that he had been actively making such deliveries over the past three months,” said Moses during a press conference at state police headquarters here yesterday.

The drugs, believed to be Syabu, were neatly wrapped into 28 small packets which were then concealed inside a partially hollowed-out book and mailed here from a state in Peninsular Malaysia.

“We believe he is part of a larger syndicate involved in smuggling drugs into the state,” said Moses, adding that the seized drugs were meant for local distribution.

Interrogation of the suspect led to the subsequent arrest of a 45-year-old self-employed man, reputed to be a member of the syndicate’s higher echelon, from a house in Taman BDC around noon the same day.

Police went on to seize two cars, a Toyota Ipsum and a Honda Accord, worth RM140,000 from the elder suspect under the Forfeiture of Properties Act (FOP).

Both suspects are now being detained under Section 39(B) of the Dangerous Drugs Act (DDA) 1952, which carries the mandatory death penalty upon conviction.

Moses revealed that Monday’s case was just the ‘tip of the iceberg’ and that police were expecting to make many more arrests in the coming months.

When asked if there was an increase in demand for drugs in Sarawak, the anti-narcotics chief said increased co-operation between the public and police had made it more difficult for syndicates to bring drugs into the state.

“From what we have gathered, there is actually a shortage of supply which is why these syndicates are resorting to more desperate measures to smuggle drugs.

“I would also like to thank the public for their continued support in helping us to combat this menace,” he said.

Moses also revealed that from January to March this year, there had been 12 cases and 19 arrests made under the Section 39(B) DDA 1952 compared to only four cases and seven arrests in the same period last year.

In addition, there were also four arrests made under the Special Preventive Measures, which carries an automatic two-year detention period.

Police have also seized three houses, 11 vehicles and nearly RM30,000 in cash worth a combined total of RM1.1 million under the FOP from suspected drug dealers so far this year, with more possibly to come later this year in the form of a RM1.1 million house and a factory.

Moses, however, declined to comment more on the possible seizures of the latter two properties as both cases were still under police investigation.

Tagged with: crime drugs

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