Medan, N Sumatra (ANTARA) - Police officers in North Sumatra thwarted a drug ring's attempt to trade 23 kg of crystal methamphetamine, or sabu-sabu, in the province following the arrests of eight suspects, a police officer stated.

The suspects were arrested in Medan City and the districts of Deli Serdang and Batu Bara, Medan City Police Chief Senior Commissioner Riko Sunarko noted in a statement that ANTARA quoted here, Monday.

From the suspects, only identified by their initials as S (22), GS (43), MJ (26), HS (26), I (47), SNU (30), FS (26), and EA (38), the cops also seized a revolver, 17 bullets, and Rp41 million in cash, he remarked.

This drug ring could be uncovered following the arrest of S in Deli Serdang District on September 16, 2021. The cops seized 0.13 grams of crystal meth from him and continued their investigation, he noted.

His arrest had led to the arrests of seven other suspects, including GS and MJ, who possessed one kg of crystal meth as well as FS and EA, who had planned to sell 22 kg of crystal meth in Medan City, he stated.

"We are still probing the case to arrest more suspects," Sunarko added.

Indonesia remains under grave threat from drug dealers, with scores from its working-age population trapped in a vicious circle of drugs.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic, which struck the country on March 2, 2020, drug lords have continued to pose a serious threat to the country with drug-trafficking rampant even amid the health crisis.

Since his first leadership term, President Joko Widodo has been reminding the nation of the grave impacts of drug consumption on Indonesia.

The users of crystal methamphetamine, narcotics, marijuana, and other types of addictive drugs come from different communities and socio-economic and cultural backgrounds.

Citing the result of a survey by the National Narcotics Agency (BNN) and Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI), Vice President Ma'ruf Amin stated that there were over 3.4 million drug users in Indonesia.

The survey indicated that some 180 out of every 10 thousand Indonesians, in the age group of 15 to 64 years, were pushed into drug addiction, he noted.

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Translator: Nur ABS, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Sri Haryati
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