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Drugs are quietly "hot" again at the Indochina junction

19:29 | 11/10/2021

VCN - Drug crimes have tended to shift to the Indochina junction area (Po Y commune, Ngoc Hoi district, Kon Tum province), making this place a hot spot for drug crimes.

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One person was arrested on charges of illegally transporting narcotics in June 2021. Photo: Collaborators
One person was arrested on charges of illegally transporting narcotics in June 2021. Photo: Collaborators

Not a peaceful border area

According to the report of Ngoc Hoi district police (Kon Tum province) at the launching ceremony to transform key areas of crime and drug abuse in Po Y commune, in the first half of this year, there were five drug-related crimes with six suspects, thereby seizing more than 4kg of methamphetamine.

Notably, the amount of drugs seized in Po Y commune accounted for more than 99% of the total drugs seized in Ngoc Hoi district.

In 2020, functional forces also detected and handled 11 drug-related crimes in Po Y commune with 15 suspects, seized dozens of kilograms of drugs, accounting for 96% of the total number of drugs seized in the district.

Po Y commune is a border commune located in the west of Ngoc Hoi district, adjacent to Laos and Cambodia, near the "golden triangle" area – one of the major centers of drug production and trade in the world.

In the commune, there is Bo Y international border gate, one auxiliary border gate, and many trails around the border area adjacent to the three countries. Meanwhile, more than 50% of the population in the commune is made up ethnic minorities, including 17 ethnic groups.

According to Ngoc Hoi district police, Po Y commune is currently a hot spot for drugs. In recent years, in the northern border provinces, functional forces have stepped up attacks and suppressed drug crimes. Therefore, drug criminals tend to move to the Central Highlands provinces bordering Laos and Cambodia, including Ngoc Hoi district in general and Po Y commune in particular.

Because the prevention of drug crimes in the provinces of Laos and Cambodia adjacent to Kon Tum province is still weak, and there are many convenient trails, suspects have taken advantage of them to transport drugs inland.

Through a number of drug trafficking cases being discovered and handled by other local authorities in recent times, all confessed that the drugs were purchased from the Bo Y international border gate area.

Ngoc Hoi district police discovered that in Po Y commune, there are three groups with about 18 suspects connected with those in Laos to transport drugs to Vietnam along the trails. The activities of these three groups that are mainly Brau ethnic people living in Dak Me village, are very complicated. They have relatives with those who illegally trade narcotics in Attapeu province (Laos), so it is difficult to apply professional measures to fight them.

In addition to the large cross-border drug smuggling lines, there are more than 10 suspected illegal drug trading and storage activities on a small scale in the commune.

Drug exhibits were seized at Bo Y border gate area. Photo: Collaborators
Drug exhibits were seized at Bo Y border gate area. Photo: Collaborators

Strengthening control to reduce drugs in the border area

According to the authorities, the Covid-19 pandemic has been complicated, so localities have tightened management to control the pandemic; agencies and departments have strengthened their understanding of the situation, so crimes in the area have shown signs of declining.

However, in the future, when the pandemic is controlled and the management is loosened, crimes will occur again. The methods and tricks of suspects will be more sophisticated, reckless, aggressive, and professional. Especially, they will take full advantage of the ignorance of a part of ethnic minorities, economic difficulties, and those that are jobless to bribe, entice them to participate in drug transportation from Laos and Cambodia.

According to the leader of Bo Y International Border Gate Customs Branch, in addition to participating in the transformation of the area according to the district’s policy, the branch will strengthen the control of goods, people, and means of entry and exit. Accordingly, inspect all goods, passengers, and vehicles from high-risk areas for drug trafficking. Consigned goods will also be 100% manually checked to completely prevent illegal transport of drugs across the border.

Simultaneously, the branch closely cooperates with the Border Guard and Police in inspecting, reviewing, and identifying the main lines and groups of drug-related subjects to fight and effectively prevent the drugs entering the country from abroad through trails along the border.

By Nguyen Hien/ Ha Thanh