Bintan, Riau Islands (ANTARA) - Police officers in Bintan District, Riau Islands Province, arrested two men, believed to belong to an international drug ring, and seized two kilograms (kg) of crystal methamphetamine from them.

The suspected drug dealers are only identified by their initials as AA and AJ, both aged 23, Bintan Police Chief Adjunct Senior Commissioner Tidar Wulung Dahono noted in a statement that ANTARA quoted here, Tuesday.

The suspects, apprehended at a guest house in the Kijang neighborhood of Bintan Timur Sub-district on February 5, 2022, told police investigators that the drug package was supplied by someone in Malaysia, he revealed.

The drug supplier is identified as TRK, he noted, adding that the local police have placed TRK on the most-wanted list.

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Indonesia remains under serious threat from domestic and transnational drug dealers, who view it as a potential market due to its huge population and millions of drug users.

Despite the ongoing spread of the novel coronavirus disease, which has prompted mobility restrictions and border closures by countries for curbing transmission, the trafficking of drugs has continued unabated.

On January 29, 2022, for instance, police officers in Mesuji District, Lampung Province, arrested three suspected drug couriers with 15 kg of crystal meth on the Trans Sumatra toll road.

According to the National Narcotics Agency (BNN), at least 50 Indonesians die of drug use every day. However, the statistic has failed to deter drug users in the country.

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Users of crystal methamphetamine, narcotics, marijuana, and other types of addictive drugs come from any community and distinct socio-economic and cultural backgrounds. Drug trade in the country is estimated to have reached nearly Rp66 trillion.

The Indonesian government has continued to apply harsh punitive action against kingpins found smuggling and trading drugs over the past few decades.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo has also issued shoot-at-sight orders against drug kingpins.

However, this has failed to discourage drug traffickers, and they have continued to treat Indonesia as one of their main markets even as Indonesian law enforcers have kept the fight going against them.

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Translator: Ogen, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
Copyright © ANTARA 2022