|Police and Border Guar forces of Quang Nam provinces inspect plastic bags containing synthetic drugs. Photo: C04.|
Suspected sacks on beach
On November 16, residents in Ha Loc village, Nam Tien commune, Nui Thanh district, Quang Nam province discovered 20 plastic bags labeled in Chinese, weighing about 1kg containing with white crystals in a sack.
The residents suspected these sacks as drugs and notified to the Border Guard and Police. Through verification, Quang Nam Provincial Police determined that the white crystals were synthetic drugs.
On November 14, Hai Long commune, Phu Quy District, Binh Thuan province received a message from Mr Truong Tho that he detected a sack on the beach while collecting scraps at Go Tang Sea area, in Phu Long Village, Long Hai Commune. He discovered 20kg of white crystals hidden inside the sack, and handled it over to the Police.
On November 21, in Da Nang City, Non Nuoc Border Guard Station received a message from Mr Le Ngoc Tu (located in Ngu Hanh Son District, Da Nang City), a lifeguard who detected a plastic package, weighing about 1 kg of white crystals suspected as synthetic drugs.
From November 21 to 22, Non Nuoc Border Guard Station detected 8kg of white crystals suspected as synthetic drugs.
On November 25, four fishermen in Tan Dong An village, Hai An commune, Hai Lang district, Quang Tri province handed in seven plastic bags, weighing 1kg per bag, containing white crystals suspected to be synthetic drugs.
On November 26, Mr Mai Van Gioi, residing in Trieu Van commune, Trieu Phong district, Quang Tri province, went to Trieu Van Border Guard Station with a plastic bag, weighing 1kg, containing white crystals suspected as synthetic drugs.
After receiving information, the law enforcement agencies of Trieu Van commune patrolled the beach from village 7 to village 9, and discovered two more plastic packages, each weighing 1 kg suspected as drugs.
On November 14 to 26, the law enforcement forces seized 58 plastic bags containing white solid crystals.
According to C04, verification showed these crystals were ketamine, weighing 58kg. This was a unusual issue.
Crimes destroyed evidence
After receiving the information and reports from the local police, C04 directed the Investigation Police Department on Drug-related Crimes of the provinces and centrally-run cities to make a record and ask for verification, as well as coordinate with local government agencies and media agencies to notify all coastal fishermen when detecting similar bags and packages, suspected of containing drugs, they must notify or immediately hand it over to the law enforcement forces to avoid violating the law.
For drug packages detected by competent forces and residents in November, they all have common characteristics, each package weighting 1 kg and containing synthetic drugs.
The experience of fishermen shows these drugs were at sea for at least about one month. They may be the evidence of an illegal transportation of drugs across sea carried out by foreigners.
However, it is possible these drugs were thrown into the sea to avoid the detection by the competent forces. The drugs bags were drifted to many localities and local residents picked up and handed over to the forces.
C04 said that in the future, a large quantity of drugs may drift at sea so it requests local drug prevention and control forces to closely coordinate with Border Guards, Customs and Coast Guard agencies to notify and raise awareness of fishermen and coastal people, and require them to report and handover drugs to the competent forces when detecting suspected drug bags, not store or use or trafficking drugs, leading to serious violation.
C04 has collaborated with drug prevention and control agencies of states in the Asia-Pacific region with neighboring seas such as Thailand, Cambodia, Myanmar, Taiwan (China), Drug Enforcement Administration of the US Department of Justice (DEA) for verification.
C04 also directs the local drug prevention and control forces to coordinate with the Border Guard, Customs and Coast Guard authorities to strengthen patrols and control at sea areas where drugs are drifting; collect information and fight against criminal rings that trafficking drugs across the country by sea.