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Town high on drug traffickers

Repeka Nasiko
Monday, March 05, 2018

DRUG smuggling is one of the serious criminal activities that has been rife in Nadi, says Nadi Police Station officer in charge Assistant Superintendent of Police Shiu Chand.

While speaking to entrepreneurs at the Nadi Chamber of Commerce and Industry business forum over the weekend, he said Nadi had been a transit point to cart hard drugs.

"They are brought in from one country to Nadi and then shipped to another country," he said.

"The amount of drug seizures we have made is mind-blowing I would say.

"One of the instances of a drug seizure we came across was of cocaine and it was brought on a yacht that came in through Port Denarau.

"In that seizure we found more than 20.4 kilograms of cocaine."

ASP Chand then explained how the smugglers intended to transport the drugs out of the country.

"It (cocaine) was kept in one of the hotels within our vicinity. There they mixed alcohol with the cocaine and then towels were soaked into the mixture.

"The towels were then dried up so that the cocaine was absorbed into the fabric and it was ready to be taken back to New Zealand.

"At the airport we had our own people and the people from Biosecurity who scanned the shipment and found the drugs.

"These are some of the operations these drug cartels are using at the moment."

He said this mode of transport was first recorded in Sri Lanka before it was copied by smugglers moving cocaine through Fiji.

"This is a major challenge that we face in our district because Nadi is one of the fastest growing and developing areas in the country."

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