Myanmar Seizes Massive Methamphetamine Hauls Destined for Malaysia and Indonesia
By Htun Htun THE IRRAWADDY Thu, August 20, 2020
Suspects and drugs seized at Kyeinnali Beach in Rakhine State on August 16. / Central Committee for Drug Abuse and Control / Facebook
YANGON – Myanmar’s police say they have seized 112 billion kyats (US$81.6 million) worth of crystal methamphetamines or Ice apparently destined for Malaysia and Indonesia at Kyeinnali Beach in Rakhine State and Sel Eaintan Beach in Yangon Region, according to the military-controlled Ministry of Home Affairs.
Police seized 1,380 kg of crystal meth worth of 32 billion kyats ($23 million) on Myanmar’s market from a vessel docked southwest of Kyeinnali in southern Rakhine State on Sunday. Police also arrested five suspects in connection with the drugs haul and said the drugs were transferred from another vessel near Mawkin Village in Thandwe. Police say they are looking for other suspects.
In another case, police seized 1,000 kg of crystal meth worth 80 billion kyats near the fishing port at Sel Eaintan Beach in Yangon’s Kungyangon Township on July 31. The police said the drugs came from southern Shan State and were destined for Malaysia.
A suspect and drugs seized at Sel Eaintan Beach in Kungyangon Township on July 31. / Central Committee for Drug Abuse and Control / Facebook
Police also arrested seven suspects separately in Hopong and Taunggyi in Shan State, Leiktho in Karen State and Mingaladon and South Dagon townships in Yangon. Police have sealed off three houses and seized nine cars and a speedboat for further investigations.
All the seized drugs were disguised as Chinese teabags, including Guan Yin Wang and Refined Chinese Tea. In August last year, Myanmar’s military raided a meth factory in Namhsan Township and seized crystal meth packed in Chinese brand teabags.
The authorities seized 11.5 billion kyats ($8.4 million) worth of meth and heroin in Kyethi Township on August 15 this year, 25 billion kyats ($18.2 million) worth of meth in Tachileik Township on August 13 and 797 million kyats ($581,000) worth in early August in Tachilek.
Two suspects and drugs seized in Tachilek on August 13. / Central Committee for Drug Abuse and Control / Facebook
Over 24.6 billion kyats ($18 million) worth of meth and heroin were seized on Kengtung-Loimway-Wanlone junction in Namhsan on June 7, and 78.7 billion kyats ($57 million) worth of drugs were seized on May 24 and May 29 on Loilem-Taunggyi and Taunggyi-Kalaw roads.
In March last year, Myanmar’s navy said it seized over 43 billion kyats ($31.3 million) of crystal meth off the Tanintharyi Region coast from a vessel from Gwa in southern Rakhine. The navy reported at least three seizures of meth worth hundreds of billions of kyats from vessels near Tanintharyi. The drugs were destined for Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia, according to the navy.