HK police seize more than HK$63 million worth of suspected cocaine, shut down drugs storage facility

27-Feb-2021 Intellasia | South China Morning Post | 5:02 AM Print This Post

Hong Kong police have confiscated more than HK$63 million (US$8.1 million) worth of suspected cocaine and arrested a man after shutting down a newly set up drugs storage centre.

The latest seizure brought the total worth of illegal narcotics uncovered this month to about HK$575 million.

Investigations showed the storage operations were carried out in an industrial unit on Larch Street in Tai Kok Tsui for about 10 days.

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“Police believe the raid had prevented this haul of illegal drugs from being circulated in the market,” Senior Inspector Tam Wai-lok of the narcotics bureau said on Thursday.

Acting on intelligence and follow-up checks, plain-clothes officers staged an ambush outside the industrial building at around lunchtime on Wednesday.

Officers moved in and intercepted the suspect when he left the building shortly before 3pm.

Three slabs of suspected cocaine was found in a nylon bag that the 25-year-old man was carrying.

The suspect was escorted into a subdivided unit in the building, where police found another 35 slabs of the drug.

“During the operation, police confiscated 40 slabs of suspected cocaine weighing 40.3kg in total. The haul has an estimated street value of HK$63.5 million,” Tam said.

He said the investigation showed the suspect had rented the subdivided flat since mid-February.

The senior inspector said police believed there was a drug-trafficking syndicate behind the large volume of illegal drugs, and an investigation was under way.

He added that the jobless suspect was likely to be charged with drug trafficking and would appear in West Kowloon Court on Friday.

In Hong Kong, trafficking in a dangerous drug carries a maximum penalty of life imprisonment and a HK$5 million fine.

The latest operation was one of many key anti-narcotics missions launched by police.

On February 3, the force made its biggest seizure of ketamine, finding a 682kg stash with an estimated street value of HK$437 million in a Kwai Chung warehouse. The drugs were shipped from Pakistan in packages labelled as macaroni.

Eight days later, officers seized HK$40 million worth of heroin in an industrial unit in Kwai Chung.

On February 17, officers uncovered HK$35 million worth of cannabis buds smuggled into the city from North America, and disguised as cereal, when they raided a mini-storage centre in Hung Hom.

According to official statistics, local authorities seized 1,071kg of cannabis in 2020, a 186 per cent rise from 374kg in 2019. Seizure of ketamine rose by 71.9 per cent to 471kg in 2020, but that of cocaine dropped 24.4 per cent to 1,269kg in 2020.


Category: Hong Kong

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