Police in Vietnam made another huge drug seizure this week, finding a ton of what is believed to be crystal meth that was dumped near a salt field in the country’s north after residents called the authorities.
Local residents phoned the police to complain about bags which they thought were industrial garbage being dumped near a salt field on April 16, according to Tran Quoc Tuan, chairman of the Quynh Thuan Ward in Quynh Luu in Nghe An, VN Express reported. Nghe An province is just south of Hanoi and Haiphong.
On Wednesday, when police arrived at the spot, on the edge of National Highway 48B, they uncovered about a ton of ‘white crystals’ stored inside 23 bags.
Deputy head of the Nghe An Police, Nguyen Manh Hung, said that three suspects from different locations were arrested on April 17 but did not give any further details.
An unnamed police officer pointed out that the dumped meth could be linked to the 600 kilograms of meth that was seized on April 15 when police searched a house in Vinh, the provincial capital, 90 kilometers from Quynh Luu, and arrested five suspects.
Despite having the death penalty for drug traffickers, Vietnam continues to be plagued by drugs as it has become a key transit point for regional drug smugglers thanks to its favorable logistics.
‘Golden Triangle drug lord’
Investigators said last month that a trafficking syndicate run by a Chinese group was transporting large amounts of meth from the Golden Triangle through Laos into Vietnam. And some of those consignments were distributed from Vietnam to other countries.
The gang was allegedly headed by a Chinese man named Wu Heshan, 56, who set up a ‘garment company’ outside Ho Chi Minh City five years ago. But his compound was guarded around the clock and his security guards were kept away whenever ‘goods’ arrived.
Increased surveillance led to a raid on March 20, when 16 Chinese, including Wu, were arrested, with others, and 300 kilograms of meth seized.
Police later found 270 kg of meth had been shipped to the Philippines – a consignment that was seized on March 22.
Even before the latest discovery on Wednesday, more than 1.18 million tons had been seized in recent weeks.