Padang, W Sumatra (ANTARA) - The West Sumatra police arrested 239 people for their alleged involvement in drug trafficking operations and drug misuse between October and November this year, a police spokesperson stated.

The cops seized 118.98 kg of dried marijuana, five marijuana plants, 543.11 grams of crystal meth, and nine ecstasy pills from the suspects, West Sumatra Police spokesman, Sen. Coms. Dwi Sulistyawan, remarked.

During the drug raids in October, the cops apprehended 175 suspects and confiscated 284.1 grams of crystal meth, 77.27 kg of dried marijuana, two ecstasy pills, and five marijuana plants, he noted here Friday.

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Some 106 suspects are aged between 31 and 35; 96 suspects are between 30 and 35 years of age; 58 suspects are aged between 19 and 24; and eight suspects are below 18 years of age, he stated.

Some 19 of the 239 suspects are identified as university students, while 21 others are farmers, he stated while adding that one police officer and one civil servant were also found among the suspects, he revealed.

Indonesia is viewed by both domestic and transnational drug dealers as a potential market due to its vast population and millions of drug users.

The value of drug trade in the country is estimated to have reached nearly Rp66 trillion.

On October 25, 2022, the Medan city police thwarted an attempt to trade 42 kg of crystal meth by three drug traffickers in the capital city of North Sumatra Province and arrested the trio.

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The suspects were identified by their initials as ZU (28), SMS (36), and IS (42).

The crystal meth package was received by SMS from a drug lord in Malaysia. The police arrested SMS while transporting the crystal methamphetamine on the Tebing Tinggi-Medan highway on Oct 25, 2022.

Meanwhile, on December 1, 2022, two drug mules' attempt to transport some 455 grams of crystal methamphetamine that they had stashed in their anus during a flight from Aceh Province to Java Island could be foiled.

The suspects, only identified by their initials as ZK (52) and MD (32), were arrested by police officers at the Soekarno Hatta International Airport's Terminal 3, Banten Police spokesperson Sen. Coms. Shinto Silitonga stated.

The cops seized 455 grams of crystal meth from ZK, a resident of Sawang Sub-district in North Aceh District, and MD, a resident of Mila Sub-district in Pidie District, he remarked.

In response to the smuggling of illicit drugs by drug kingpins over the past few decades, the Indonesian government has continued to apply harsh punitive action against them.

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Translator: Mario SN, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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