Maldives Police Service (MPS) has had a busy week cracking down on several cases of drug and alcohol smuggling across the nation where over 15 individuals were arrested.
In two operations conducted in capital Malé City, officers of the Drug Enforcement Department and Drug Intelligence arrested seven individuals in possession of a hefty amount of beer.
Following a tip-off, officers arrested a 40-year-old Maldivian man who was operating a vehicle under the influence of narcotics. Officers confiscated 18 cans of beer inside the vehicle. The operation was conducted on Tuesday.
In another operation conducted the next day following a tip-off, officers confiscated a total of 816 cans of beer from a vehicle parked near the capital’s jetty region.
Arrested in connection to the case are a 24-year-old Bangladeshi national and two 20-year-olds, an 18-year-old, a 35-year-old and a 36-year-old, all Maldivians.
Another tip-off led to operations in six islands in the south of Maldives,
On Thursday, officers stationed in Hulhumeedhoo district of southernmost Addu City collaborated with police intelligence officers to raid a ferry en-route to the district from Hithadhoo district, where they confiscated 30 pieces of cellophane containing suspected narcotics. No arrests were made in connection to the case.
Four individuals were arrested from the wooded area of Kinbidhoo island in Thaa atoll the same day. The arrested were under the influence of alcohol and officers confiscated four bottles of alcohol totaling five liters. Arrested were a 22-year-old Maldivian woman, a 29-year-old as well as a 31-year-old and 41-year-old, all Maldivian men.
An operation was also conducted in Gadhdhoo island of Gaaf Dhaal atoll on Wednesday, where a residence was searched under a court order. Officers confiscated three empty film cannisters stuffed with suspected narcotics and no arrests have been made in connection to the case yet.
The same day, a 32-year-old was arrested from Villingili island of Gaaf Alif atoll for being in possession of narcotics. The suspect has since been remanded by 15 days in a location decided by the Ministry of Home Affairs.
On Wednesday police also arrested a 33-year-old from Feydhoo district of Addu City following which officers confiscated two large rubber packets filled with suspected narcotics.
A 39-year-old who was arrested from Dhangethi island in Alif Dhaal atoll on Wednesday. Officers raided his residence under a court order and confiscated 45 rubber packets filled with suspected narcotics. The suspect was slapped with a 15-day remand by the Mahibadhoo Magistrate Court.
Separate operations were held in Kendhikulhudhoo and Holhudhoo islands of Noonu atoll as well as Kulhudhuffushi City in Haa Dhaal atoll on Wednesday and Thursday respectively.
Maafaru police officers with the joint efforts from the police intelligence unit, confiscated an empty film cannister hidden away inside a box onboard a vessel en-route from the Maldives capital to Kendhikulhudhoo. No arrests were made in connection to the case.
In a similar case of drug smuggling from the capital, officers stationed in Holhudhoo island arrested a 38-year-old in possession of drugs. Officers confiscated a packet filled with suspected narcotics, from the suspect who has since been remanded by 10 days by the island’s magistrate court.
Another Maldivian man, 26, was arrested from Kulhudhuffushi City’s harbor region on Wednesday. Kulhudhuffushi Magistrate Court has slapped the man with a 10-day remand.
All of the cases are under further investigation, assured police.