Malaysian police arrest Johor drug 'Queenpin'

JOHOR BARU (THE STAR/ASIA NEWS NETWORK) - She used to be involved in a Nigerian drug syndicate and learnt the trade before she was caught in the Klang Valley and banished under preventive laws for two years.

She then moved her operation to the south of the country and started her own drug trade last year after pairing with the leader of a notorious gang in Johor. They supply an array of drugs including syabu, heroin, ketamine and amphetamine type stimulants to neighbouring countries, including Indonesia.

Her turf and extensive supply chains has earned the woman, nicknamed Imelda, the moniker "Queenpin". She is in her 30s.

However, her activities came to an end when narcotics officers arrested her along with the local gang leader and 13 other members of the Gang 36 in a series of raids this month.

The raids since Oct 12 were conducted in Simpang Renggam, Mersing, Batu Pahat and Johor Baru, said Bukit Aman Narcotic Crimes Investigations Department director Mohamad Salleh.

The suspects, including four women aged between 26 and 39, have since been remanded to assist in the investigations, he said.

One of the suspects had escaped from a prison in Indonesia.

Mr Mohamad said police also seized drugs and assets worth about RM3 million (S$993,000) from the syndicate.

"The drugs include 16kg of syabu, 6kg of heroin, 0.25kg of ketamine, 97 Ecstasy pills, 12 yaba pills and an Erimin 5 pill.

"All these drugs are enough for the consumption of 85,000 addicts," he told a press conference here on Tuesday (Oct 16).

The Gang 36 leader, from Simpang Renggam, was a notorious person whose birthday video - when he used a parang to cut his birthday cake - went viral on social media.

Meanwhile, the escapee, who was on the Indonesian police wanted list, had been serving time for a drug offence when he escaped from prison last year, according to Mr Mohamad.

The police would work with their counterparts from Indonesia on the matter, he added.

He also said the Narcotics Investigations Department had arrested 130,527 people including 7,382 foreigners so far this year.

"Most of those arrested tested positive for drugs which totalled 60,037 while 49,715 were caught for possession and 20,775 for trafficking offences," he added.

He said that during the same period, some RM332.9 million worth of drugs were seized and about RM58.2 million worth of properties were forfeited.