Dubai Police seize 500kg of drugs in 2018

Heroin accounted for nearly a third of the drugs found, police say

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Dubai Police seized more than 500 kilograms of drugs in 2018 — a near 50 per cent increase on the previous year.

The force made 2,734 arrests in connection with drug offences last year, up from 2,553 in 2017.

More than 850 of those arrested by police were aged between 18 and 25.

Figures released by Dubai Police revealed a sharp increase in the amount of heroin and cocaine seized.

“It was a successful year for Dubai police in its war against drugs locally and internationally,” said Col Khalid bin Moyazeh, Deputy Director of Dubai Police’s anti-narcotic department.

About 131kg of heroin was seized by police, up from 57kg the previous year. Five times more cocaine, 25kg, was seized than in 2017.

“The youngest suspect arrested was a 15-year-old, but the number of teens arrested in relation to drug use has dropped from 25 last year to only eight, which is a result of the various awareness programmes and families' co-operation,” Col bin Moyazeh said.

Dubai Police dealt with 1,833 drug cases last year compared to 1,742 cases in 2017, with of them drug use.

“An increase in the drug trade in Dubai has been spotted and 324 drug peddlers were arrested last year compared to 199 in 2017,” Col bin Moyazeh said.

This month, Dubai Police carried out what it described as the country's biggest drugs bust.

Drugs worth an estimated Dh278 million were recovered in an operation that led to 16 arrests.

Police said the investigation spanned Dubai, Sharjah, Ajman and Umm Al Quwain, and Interpol was involved at one stage.

Two criminal groups were monitored during an investigation that lasted months.

Police also worked in tandem with the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority to block 44 websites on the dark web used to sell drugs online.

Dubai Police are playing a crucial role in the international war on drug crimes, working with other countries to bring offenders to justice.

Information provided by Dubai Police to colleagues around the globe led to 158 arrests and the seizure of more than 1,500kg of drugs.