Close to a thousand suspects detained as police crack major drug smuggling rings

June 30, 2024 - 10:49
The police have announced the successful dismantling of hundreds of drug trafficking rings in three localities.
Counting the shipment of drugs hidden in toothpaste tubes seized from the luggage of four flight attendants in Tân Sơn Nhất International Airport in HCM City in March 2023. VNA/VNS Photo

HCM CITY — Legal proceedings are underway against 961 suspects accused of producing, trafficking, storing and using drugs following a year-long investigation into the case of flight attendants illegally transporting drugs from France to Tân Sơn Nhất International Airport.

The police announced that they have successfully broken up hundreds of drug trafficking rings in HCM City, Bình Dương Province and Đồng Nai Province.

The police also seized more than 319 kilogrammes of various synthetic drugs, 12 firearms, 67 bullets, three grenades and numerous related exhibits during the investigation.

The initial investigation's results also revealed that prior to their arrest, the suspects had illegally traded hundreds of kilogrammes of drugs, amounting to transactions valued at over VNĐ28 trillion (US$1.09 billion).

The case began on March 16 last year when Tân Sơn Nhất customs detected suspicious items in the luggage of four female flight attendants returning from France.

Customs officers notified the Drug Crime Investigation Police Department (C04) under the Ministry of Public Security and the Drug Crime Investigation Office (PC04) under the HCM City’s Police Department, who launched a united and coordinated inspection, leading to the wider operation being revealed.

Subsequent examination revealed that of the 327 toothpaste tubes in the attendants' luggage, almost half, 157 tubes, contained over 11.2 kilogrammes of synthetic drugs.

Throughout the investigation, authorities said that the air line staff insisted that they were unaware that the goods they transported from France to Việt Nam contained drugs.— VNS