|Deputy Director of Hanoi Customs Department Nguyen Truong Giang
What are the recent highlights of drug prevention through Noi Bai International Airport?
Drug trafficking and transportation through Noi Bai International Airport continue to be a significant issues, especially after the Covid-19 pandemic. Drug traffickers have abused trade facilitation policies to illegally bring drugs into Vietnam with increasing volume, complex scale in the form of gifts and donated, or via courier routes, primarily through carry-on baggage.
Thus, Hanoi Customs has presided over and coordinated with Public Security to collect information, but many drug trafficking rings and groups; and seize a considerable amount of narcotics.
Typically, in 2021, Hanoi Customs proactively detected and coordinated with the Public Security and drug enforcement units in the Customs sector to break many drug rings and groups. As a result, the authorities seized 160 kg of drugs of all kinds, arrested 21 suspects, and dismantled many drug trafficking rings from Hanoi to other provinces.
In 2022, Hanoi Customs coordinated with police forces such as Hanoi City Police, the Drug-related Crime Investigation Police Department (C04-Ministry of Public Security), provincial police agencies, especially Ho Chi Minh City, Binh Duong, Dong Nai, to settle many specialized projects and seize 372kg of drugs of all kinds and 39 suspects.
In particular, Hanoi Customs presided over the first four months of 2023 alone. They coordinated with Public Security agencies to establish specialized drug projects. They coordinated with the Drug-related Crime Investigation Police Department (PC04-Hanoi City Police) and drug enforcement units in the North and South, the provincial police agencies, to break many drug rings, seizing 517 kg of drugs of all kinds.
With the increasingly dynamic and complex nature, could you speak about the difficulties of Customs forces in the fight against drug crime?
The scale and tactics of drug traffickers and transporters often change very quickly, dynamically and increasingly complicated. Therefore, the Customs authorities and drug enforcement agencies in Hanoi capital have worked together to capture foreign and domestic Intelligence, especially new tactics to develop appropriate measures.
For example, drug traffickers often abuse the openness of policies and loopholes of the law to transport drugs through gifts, and the donated sent to unclear recipient addresses, making it difficult for the Customs to investigate and solve cases.
Through express delivery routes, taking advantage of cross-border e-commerce, smugglers often send a small number of goods for testing and track the entire outbound journey, and then they will send large quantities. Therefore, the arrest is difficult.
As for carry-on luggage, if suspects carried very small quantities, they have been recently taking advantage of the facilitation policies for foreign passengers to carry a very large volume, up to hundreds of kilograms of drugs of all kinds concealed in double-bottomed suitcases, in ordinary household items, machinery and equipment for personal travel, to bypass the inspection and control of the Customs.
How has Hanoi Customs taken measures to fight against increasingly sophisticated tricks promptly?
Customs has applied many professional measures, such as collecting foreign and domestic Intelligence, especially on behaviour and tricks of concealment. Furthermore, especially in personnel work, the Customs has arranged well-experienced officers at key positions to inspect goods at the border gate; and regularly coordinated with authorities to warn new tricks.
In addition, the drug enforcement units have proactively collected information, established specialized projects and coordinated with police agencies to promptly arrest domestic and foreign suspects and rings. In particular, in professional measures, Customs has maximized technological measures such as drug detection machines, scanners and the use of sniffing dogs to detect goods with suspicious signs, expanding the struggle and dismantling cases.
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The process of fighting drug crimes of the Hanoi Customs has always been instructed by leaders at all levels, as well as received the close support C04 of the Ministry of Public Security, the Public Security of Hanoi City, Ho Chi Minh City and Binh Duong and Dong Nai provinces. Moreover, the accompanying support of the people of the provinces is an element for the success of the fight against drug crime. Therefore, leaders at all levels have appreciated and rewarded the results.