Police in Vietnam’s southern metropolis of Ho Chi Minh City have raided a drug ring led by a Taiwanese man.
Suspect Liu Ming Yang and seized narcotics. Photo: VOV
The batch of 500 kg of ketamine is the biggest-ever drug volume in a case disclosed in Vietnam so far, local media quoted Brigadier General Pham Van Cac, head of the Office of Investigation Police Agency under the Ministry of Public Security.
The ring leader, Liu Ming Yang, 34, from Taiwan and some other from the mainland China and Taiwan (China) run the network which transported drug from the Golden Triangle (an area formed by part of Myanmar, part of Thailand, and part of Laos that produces the world’s largest producer of opium).
Ketamine is five times more expensive than methamphetamine and often consumed by the rich. The batch costs approximately VND500 billion (US$21 million), the police official told media.
Ketamine was found stashed in industrial-grade machinery, in an operation carried out after months of surveillance.
Liu has entered Vietnam many times by visitor visa and set up his networks covering a vast area in the southern region.
The head contacted with his accomplices by satellite phones. Those hired to work for him are totally strangers and know nothing about the goods they were involved in.
Major General Pham Van Cac from the Ministry of Public Security. Photo: Soha
Ho Chi Minh’s police began investigating the case in September 2018 with the support of the local customs and central police forces.
The police bore uncountable difficulties when keeping track of the ring on a path of roughly 2,000 km from the Vietnam-China border to Ho Chi Minh City.
The bust follows several other massive hauls in recent weeks of drugs believed to have been shuttled into the country from neighboring Laos, according to AFP.
This batch once again piles up the seized volume, amounting more than seven tons (including heroin, methamphetamine, methylene dioxy methamphetamine (MDMA)) so far this year. Half of the volume is methamphetamine.
Local police said drug in Vietnam was mainly from the Golden Triangle, the northern region which borders with China, and the central region which borders with Laos.
Arrestees and perpetrators in transnational drug smuggling rings are Chinese, Taiwanese, Laotian, and Filipino.
Vietnamese Minister of Public Security To Lam once warned that the country is at risk of becoming a drug smuggling hub as narcotics gangs use its ports and air links to shuttle drugs across the region.