JOHOR BARU, Jan 12 — In the latest war against drugs, Johor police broke up a trafficking syndicate and confiscated RM125.8 million worth of narcotics.
Bukit Aman Narcotics Criminal Investigation Department (NCID) director Datuk Razarudin Husain @ Abd Rasid said the raids were the result of a year-long effort in hunting down drug lords.
He said police nabbed 15 suspects in 16 raids over the weekend.
“The local suspects consisted of eight men and seven women, aged between 17 and 62.
“The syndicate’s alleged top leader, who is in his 30s, was also detained.
“Investigations are still ongoing on the possibility that there are other remaining syndicate members who are still free and this includes the masterminds,” said Razarudin at a press conference at the Johor police contingent headquarters here today.
Alos present were Johor police chief Datuk Ayob Khan Mydin Pitchay and other senior officers.
Razarudin said police have been conducting intelligence gathering for a year against the drug smuggling and distribution syndicates operating in two houses around the city here which are used as storage areas and drug processing laboratories.
“This particular syndicate that processes the drugs themselves is believed to have been active since the first movement control order last year due to the country's borders being tightly controlled, making drugs from abroad difficult to be smuggled in,” revealed the federal police narcotics chief.
The drugs seized during the raids consist of 72.61 kilogrammes (kg) of syabu (crystal methamphetamine), ecstasy powder (12.81kg) and marijuana (5.44kg).
In addition, police also seized a total of 3.72 million eramin 5 psychotropic pills, 397,905 ecstasy pills, heroin (four grammes), ketamine (28 grammes), drug-laced mango juice (8.5 grammes), drug powder weighing 969.15 kg, together with six drug processing machines and equipment.
The raiding team also seized 13 luxury cars of various brands, a Kawasaki motorcycle, RM2.28 million in cash, various foreign currencies worth RM284,000, gold bars weighing 1kg, four Rolex watches and various types of jewellery.
Razarudin said initial investigations revealed that the drug laboratory was able to process about 3,000 pills of various types of drugs in an hour, and has the capacity to produce more than 300,000 pills in less than three days.
He said the drugs were believed to be for the local market, but did not rule out the possibility that it was also smuggled out to neighbouring foreign countries.
“All the 15 suspects have been remanded from last Sunday until January 16 according to Section 39B of the Dangerous Drugs Act 1952 which carries the mandatory death sentence if convicted.
“Three of the suspects arrested have been found to be positive for drugs, while a check on past records found that they had six previous offenses including for drug offenses, firearms and criminal intimidation,” said Razarudin