GEORGE TOWN (BERNAMA) – Malaysian Police have crippled an international drug trafficking syndicate using the sea route after arresting 12 individuals including a Thai man and seized drugs worth MYR822,000 in nine raids in Kedah, Penang and Perak last Tuesday and Wednesday.
Bukit Aman Narcotic CID Deputy Director (intelligence/operation) DCP Zainudin Ahmad said all suspects aged between 22 and 46 were arrested with the cooperation from Penang and Perak CID.
“In the first raid at 9.15pm last Tuesday, police pulled over a vehicle in Bagan Nyiur, Juru and arrested its Thai driver. We also seized 15 plastic bags containing 313 bricks of compressed ganja worth MYR772,500.
“The drugs weighing about 309 kilogrammes were allegedly obtained from the syndicate network via sea route. The suspect is the owner of a tom yam restaurant here and has been living in the country in the last five years,” he told a press conference yesterday.
He said following the arrest, police then raided a house in Taiping, Perak at 9.45pm on the same day and arrested a man and a woman and seized 495 grammes of syabu worth MYR49,500.
Zainudin said the police also carried out seven more raids in Seberang Perai Tengah (SPT) and in Kupang, Kedah and nabbed nine members of the syndicate, believed to be active in drug trafficking in the northern states and the Klang Valley.
He said the syndicate used fibre or fishing boats to transport the drugs, allegedly from Satun, Thailand to Penang or Kedah. “However, during a raid in a house in SPT, one of the suspects in his 40s suffered from a heart attack and died while receiving treatment in a hospital in Bukit Mertajam. The unemployed man was among the key person in the syndicate,” he said.
Zainudin said the syndicate leader, a local man in his 40s, was also arrested during the raids and eight out of the 12 suspects have previous records.
“Our investigation also found that it is harvest season in Thailand now, and the syndicate is believed to have taken the advantage to process the drugs and smuggle them with rice to avoid being detected by the authorities,” he added.
During the raids, police also seized 15 luxury vehicles worth MYR1.5 million, MYR65,090 in cash and a gold ring.