$188M in cocaine and marijuana destroyed

[youtube url=”https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3jNPWB71Pxw” width=”100%” height=”315″]

─ CANU and GPF conduct exercise

– large shipment of cannabis coming from US, Canada and Jamaica

DPI, Guyana, Saturday, March 9, 2019

The Customs Anti-Narcotics Unit (CANU) and the Guyana Police Force’s Narcotics Branch of the Criminal Investigation Department this morning destroyed $188M worth of cocaine and marijuana. The exercised was conducted at Yarrowkabra, on the Soesdyke-Linden Highway.

The illegal substances destroyed this morning, accounted for the cases from 2013 to present, that were successfully concluded in the courts.

The GPF accounted for 133 kilograms of cannabis and 74 kilograms of cocaine. CANU accounted for 30.7 kilograms of cocaine, 210.2 kilograms of cannabis, 304 grams of heroin and an unknown substance of 602 grams.

The destruction exercise was transparent as members of the media were allowed to choose any parcel of cocaine and cannabis on the site for testing by members of the Guyana Forensic Science Laboratory.

CANU’s Deputy Head Lesley Ramlall said that the destination for the local cannabis was Barbados. Ramlall noted that there is importation of cannabis from Jamaica adding that with the legalisation of cannabis in the developed countries, there has been shipment from those countries as well.

“About two or three weeks ago, we had a seizure at Laparkan with cannabis coming from the United States. Last year, we had a seizure with cannabis coming from Canada, so that is something that as law enforcement we now have to be aware of and it certainly poses another challenge for Guyana and all law enforcement agencies” he explained.

However, Ramlall pointed out that while law enforcement officers might have their hands full, shipping agencies also face an uphill task. He stated that “it is not only for law enforcement, but what about all those carriers, what about all those agencies that are involved in trading and even to importers, you have to be much more careful now with your commodities coming into Guyana and the possibility of people attempting to put illegal substances within your container or your shipment.”

This destruction of the illegal substances is the second such exercise being carried out by the law enforcement agencies in a short time-span with the last exercise being conducted in November 2018. During that assignment, over $513M worth of cocaine and cannabis were destroyed. A total of 132 kilograms of cocaine and 440 kilograms of cannabis were destroyed by the police, while 345 kilograms cocaine and 554 kilograms of cannabis were destroyed by CANU.

Isaiah Braithwaite

Images: Keno George