SINGAPORE - A Malaysian syndicate used courier services in Singapore to traffic drugs to other countries through the Republic.
The syndicate is believed to have been operating in this fashion since January and had been monitored by the Central Narcotics Bureau (CNB) since July.
Acting on information from CNB, the Narcotics Crime Investigation Department (NCID) of the Royal Malaysian Police arrested five Malaysians allegedly linked to the syndicate between Sept 24 and 28.
The four women and one man, aged between 21 and 71, are suspected to be involved in drug trafficking activities in and around Kuala Lumpur and Selangor.
In a release on Wednesday (Oct 6), CNB said close to 55kg of drugs worth about RM4.9 million (S$1.6 million) were seized during a series of raids in Selangor, Negeri Sembilan and Kuala Lumpur.
In total, 5.8kg of methamphetamine and 14.8kg of ketamine, as well as 34.3kg of powder and 30.1 litres of liquid methylenedioxymethamphetamine - more commonly known as MDMA - were seized.
The authorities also found drug processing equipment and 2.2kg of caffeine believed to be used in drug production.
In a press conference with Malaysian media, the NCID said it also seized three cars worth about RM240,000 in total, and another RM426,000 from 11 bank accounts.
The authorities said the five individuals arrested were only runners who did drug deliveries and that the mastermind of the drug trafficking operation was still at large.
One of them is expected to be charged in Malaysia on Wednesday.
Assistant Commissioner Leon Chan, who is deputy director of CNB (Operations), said the swift arrests were testament to the close cooperation between the Singapore and Malaysian law enforcement authorities.
"Both agencies will continue to share intelligence in a timely fashion and work closely together against transnational drug trafficking activities," he said.
"Singapore does not tolerate the activities of syndicates which make use of Singapore's connectivity to ship their drugs, and CNB will continue to work closely with our foreign counterparts to interdict the supply of drugs and to prevent Singapore from being used as a trans-shipment hub for drugs."