Jakarta (ANTARA) - Three members of a Malaysian drug ring were caught in Aceh province and 30 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine stashed in three blue jerry cans was seized from one of them, a police officer informed on Thursday.

Speaking at a press conference here, chief of the West Jakarta Police, Senior Commissioner M.Syahduddi, said that the suspected drug traffickers, identified as LH (39), YL (48), and AM (45), were apprehended during a raid on December 19, 2023.

"From LH, cops seized three blue jerry cans containing 30 big plastic bags of crystal meth," he informed.

LH told police investigators that he got the 30 plastic bags containing 30 kg of crystal meth from AM and YL to meet the request of JM, YM, and MT, he added.

"The police are still hunting down JM, YM, and MT," he said, adding that the arrested suspects have been charged under Articles 114 (2), 112 (2), and 132 (1) of Law No.35 of 2009 on Narcotics.

If convicted, they could be sentenced to death, or face life imprisonment or 6 to 20 years in prison, Syahduddi said.

ANTARA has reported earlier that Aceh has been in a state of emergency over drug trafficking with transnational and interprovincial drug rings still active in the province despite the ongoing crackdown against them.

Both police and the National Narcotics Agency (BNN) have continued to clamp down on drug kingpins and their drug supply networks in Aceh over the past few years.

Domestic and transnational drug dealers consider Indonesia to be a potential market due to its vast population and millions of drug users.

The value of the drug trade in the country is estimated to have reached nearly Rp66 trillion, with the number of drug trafficking cases continuing to surge.

A joint survey conducted by the National Narcotics Agency (BNN) and the Indonesian Institute of Sciences (LIPI) in 2019 pegged the number of drug users in Indonesia at over 3.4 million.

The survey conducted in 34 provinces indicated that about 180 out of every 10 thousand Indonesians in the age group of 15 to 64 years were addicted to drugs.

The users of crystal methamphetamine, narcotics, marijuana, and other types of addictive drugs can belong to any community and socioeconomic and cultural background.

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Translator: RER Syukur, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Azis Kurmala
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