Inline with its tangible efforts to combat drug trafficking and support the legal international trade movement, Dubai Customs managed to foil two separate bids to smuggle 10.7 kg of opium hidden inside two transit cargos arriving from an Asian country and on their way to a western country through Dubai International Airport. The first of which weighs 6.2 kg of opium inside a box of four reels wrapped with decoration materials used on curtains whereas the second one was subtly hidden inside two pads of a wheel chair with a total weight of 4.5 kg of opium.
The first operation was carried out during a regular inspection procedure when a customs inspector who works in the Parcel Office at Dubai Cargo Village in Dubai International Airport suspected the content of a parcel that comprised a box of four reels wrapped with decoration materials used on curtains. He noticed an unusual thickness in the size of the reels as well as some bumpiness in the parcel which was heading from an Asian country to a western one.
The parcel was checked by the x-ray machine and the reels were examined manually which revealed four black hand-sized plastic bags in between the curtain materials. The four bags contained a murky dough-like object that increased the inspectors' doubts and by utilizing his experience, skill and training, he was easily able to identify the found narcotics as “Opium”. This was confirmed by the Dubai Customs Technical Support Unit and the K9 Unit- Dogs squad who were immediately contacted to examine the suspicious parcel and detect the seized objects.
As for the second operation, it also took place at Dubai Cargo Village- parcel Office. It started when another Customs inspector suspected a box with a wheel chair inside. As the box was passing through the x-ray machine, the inspector noticed a strange thickness in the middle of the box and had to have it manually examined after taking the permission of the customs clearance company representative and the precautionary procedures.
While examining and opening the back pad of the wheel chair, a murky and dark dough-like substance that weighed about 2.31 kg was found. The same was found in the other bottom pad with about 2.20 kg weight.
The Technical Support Unit- K9 Customs Unit Dogs Squad - was brought to the scene to inspect the samples and confirmed that it was “Opium” with a total weight of approximately 4.52 kg.
Inline with the ongoing coordination and cooperation between the General Department of Dubai Police and Dubai Customs, two seizure reports were issued and Dubai Customs investigators were kept updated. The two seizures were transferred to the General Department of the Anti-Narcotics Department to take the necessary legal action.
H.E. Ahmed Butti Ahmed, Dubai Customs Director General praised the inspectors who uncovered the two contrabands inside the two cargos for the great efforts they exert to safeguard the local community and protect it from anything that might threaten the security, health and safety of its individuals. He also commended the great role they play in reinforcing Dubai Customs international reputation it enjoys in the field of combating smuggling. He pointed out: “Supporting the legitimate international trade movement is a highly significant strategic goal at the Department. Such is achieved by giving much attention to developing inspectors’ abilities and skills and enrolling them in a number of specialized training courses besides providing them with the different types of support and facilitations in order to help them perform their duties optimally.”
Moreover, H.E. Ahmed Butti Ahmed praised inspectors for their vigilance and knowledge of the different twisted smuggling methods used by the smugglers: “Due to customs inspectors' vigilance and high competency, it has become very difficult for smugglers to commit criminal and illegal crimes through all crossings in Dubai. Inspectors are well-trained and equipped with the most hi-tech machines in the world to expose smuggled items." He added.
It's worth mentioning that there are international conventions that regulate and govern the movement of goods and cargos (transit) among countries and authorize cargo inspection procedures to be taken by local authorities as long as content is vague or was suspected of carrying threatening materials based on intelligence reports from other countries.
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