Saudi authorities foil attempt to smuggle tons of illegal drugs

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Saudi authorities foiled attempts to smuggle more than three tons of narcotic qat and 772 kilograms of hashish into the kingdom’s southwest.

In a report by the Saudi Press Agency on Wednesday, the Interior Ministry said security patrols in Jazan and Asir areas had arrested more than 80 suspects.

More than 200,000 tablets of an unspecified substance were also seized.

The suspects include 30 Saudi citizens, one Yemeni resident and 64 others from Yemen, Ethiopia or Eritrea.

Saudi border guards in May foiled another attempt to smuggle hundreds of kilograms of hashish and qat into the kingdom from Yemen to the southern regions of Jazan, Najran and Asir.

The kingdom is no stranger to drug trafficking and has busted many attempts over the past few years. Saudi Customs and Homeland Security units operate world-class K-9 units to counter criminals attempting to bring in illegal drug shipments.

In August alone, police in Riyadh arrested eight people and seized nearly 47 million amphetamine tablets in a major drug raid.

The most common smuggled amphetamine is known as Captagon, a synthetic drug that is inexpensive to produce and often mixed with unknown chemicals.

It has recently become popular among younger age groups, including students, some of whom have used the drug in an attempt to improve academic performance.

Updated: October 13, 2022, 8:20 a.m.

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