Three Iranians have been arrested attempting to smuggle drugs worth nearly four million dollars into Malaysia, where trafficking carries a mandatory death sentence, a customs official said Sunday.
Customs deputy director Mohamad Subri Awang said the two women and one man were arrested on Friday with 13.6 million ringgit (4.0 million dollars) worth of methamphetamines.
Customs official found 54.54 kilograms (116 pounds) of the drugs in two bags, he said.
Mohamad Subri said the Iranians had arrived at Kuala Lumpur International Airport from Dubai.
“Since the collapse of the Dubai economy, we are seeing an increase in drug smugglers coming to Malaysia. The market here is lucrative and the demand is high,” he told AFP.
Mohamad Subri said since January, a total of 10 Iranians had been detained for alleged drug trafficking compared to seven for the whole of last year.
“I like to warn drug traffickers that the punishment in Malaysia for drug trafficking is death and it includes for women also,” he said.
Mohamad Subri said enforcement has been beefed-up at airports in the country especially to monitor in-bound passengers from India, Dubai and Amsterdam.
A Japanese woman appeared in a Malaysian court in late January on charges of trafficking 3.5 kilograms of methamphetamines last October which will see her executed if convicted.
The death penalty is carried out by hanging in Malaysia.