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Efforts underway to catch culprits behind largest drug bust in 12 years

Ahmed Aiham
30 April 2019, MVT 21:41
Commissioner of Police Mohamed Hameed. PHOTO: NISHAN ALI / MIHAARU
Ahmed Aiham
30 April 2019, MVT 21:41

Commissioner of Police Mohamed Hameed on Tuesday stated that efforts are underway to find the perpetrators responsible for the 149 kg of drugs seized on Monday.

Police confiscated 100 kg of heroin and 49 kg of cannabis buried in an undisclosed uninhabited island in Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll. The street value of the haul is estimated at MVR 260 million.

The haul of drugs seized by Maldives Police Service on April 29, 2019. PHOTO/POLICE

While the police have arrested five suspects in relation to the case, the magistrate court of Gahdhoo, Gaafu Dhaalu Atoll, has remanded four of them until their trials conclude. However, the remaining individual was given a remand period of 10 days.

One of these individuals was previously sentenced to life in prison but was pardoned by former President Abdulla Yameen Abdul Gayoom.

Maldives Police Service revealed that the drugs were trafficked illegally to the island from outside Maldivian borders via speedboat.

In an interview given to local media Mihaaru, Commissioner Hameed revealed that cases of drug trafficking has increased as of late, adding that the drugs were captured before 24 hours passed since burial.

149 kgs of drugs were confiscated by Maldives Police Service on April 29, 2019. PHOTO/POLICE

"This is a major achievement for the police", said Hameed.,

Moreover, he stated that the successful operation boosted confidence for upcoming operations in the future.

As per Hameed, additional resources are needed to conduct such operations in the future. However, no international parties were involved in the bust.

This is the largest confiscation of drugs in a 12-year period after police seized narcotics that weighed over a tonne, with an attached street value of MVR 1 billion.

Monday's drug bust was conducted jointly by the police's Criminal Investigation Command, Divisional Policing Command, and Drug Intelligence Unit, in an operation that lasted 72 hours.

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