Police arrest four suspects with wrapped heroin inside bodies

Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Issue 517, Page 3
Word count: 467
Published in: Macau Daily Times

By Poyi (Natalie) Leung

The Judiciary Police (PJ) in 10 days arrested four foreign suspects who allegedly smuggled more than 2.5 kilograms of heroin into Macau by ingesting the wrapped substances in order to avoid police detection.

According to Chau Wai Kuong, the chief of the criminal investigation department, the PJ believed that the wrapped heroin excreted by the three male and one female suspects after arriving Macau came from the same drug trafficking syndicate in the Golden Crescent, a region that overlaps Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan and had a street value of some three million patacas.

Mr Chau also said that the drugs were to be destined for mainland China.

After receiving intelligence provided by local sources that a Philippines woman would travel on a plane from Cebu to Macau with drugs inside her body, the PJ started operation and intercepted the woman on October 24 at the Macao International Airport.

The woman, 33, surnamed Cruz, received an x-ray check at the Conde de São Januário Central Hospital (CHCSJ) and the result showed her digest system contained “a lot of pill-like objects”, Mr Chau said.

With the hospital assistance, the woman excreted 50 substances of wrapped heroin weighing a total of 453.47 grams.

The 33-year-old told the PJ she ingested the drugs in the Philippines because of owing debts.

She was sent to the Public Prosecutions Office on October 25 and charged with drug trafficking and the use of a fake passport as Mr Chau said the Philippines passport she used to travel to Macau with was counterfeit.

The woman was taken into custody awaiting trial.

The PJ believed that more members of the drug trafficking syndicate would come to Macau and thus investigation continued after the first suspect was arrested, Mr Chau said.

On October 31, police caught two African men who flew from Malaysia at the Macau airport.

Until yesterday morning, Mr Chau said the 43-year-old Tanzanian, surnamed Mohamed and 22-year-old Nigerian surnamed Obinna at the CHCSJ excreted respectively 117 pills of heroin weighing 1491.35 grams and 53 substances of 623.44 grams.

The three suspects excreted a total of 220 pills of “high-purity” heroin with a weight over 2.5 kilograms, Mr Chau added.

Moreover, another man also from Tanzania was arrested on October 27 after flying to Macau from Malaysia. However, Mr Chau said he was still at the CHCSJ awaiting the drugs inside his body to be excreted.

None of the three African suspects gave any statements to police.

Investigation was still on-going and Mr Chau said there might be more members from the same syndicate on the way to Macau and afterwards would smuggle the drugs to the mainland.

Following the establishment of the government’s Drug Combating Commission, Mr Chau said it would reinforce the strength of the police force to tackle drug crimes in Macau.

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