JAM | Sep 19, 2023

Record number of drug seizures expected this year – PM

Tamoy Ashman

Tamoy Ashman / Our Today

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Despite Jamaica being listed as a major transshipment point for illicit drugs, Prime Minister Andrew Holness says law enforcers have ramped up efforts to tackle the problem and are on track to having a record number of drug seizures this year.

While delivering his remarks at the 37th International Drug Enforcement Conference today, Holness said that the drug trade continues to have a significant impact on Jamaica, with the circulation of drugs such as ‘Molly’ becoming a nuisance increase in production and trafficking.

“These drugs are often manufactured in clandestine labs making them more challenging to detect and eliminate. While synthetic drugs are not the dominant modality in Jamaica, we are paying close attention, especially to this, noting the trend,” said the prime minister.

He added that cocaine production in Colombia has increased, and is expected to result in an uptick in trafficking through Jamaican ports. The prime minister, however, pointed out that the number of cocaine seizures in Jamaica have also increased, as law enforcers continue their crack down.

“The Narcotics Division of our police force have been doing good work…with early indications suggesting that 2023 may be a record year as it relates to drug seizures, with the authorities confiscating approximately 1.5 tonnes of cocaine in January, one of the largest ever drug bust in our country,” the prime minister disclosed.

Holness revealed that there have been two seizures of Molly from the United States and Netherlands this year and four in 2022. Jamaica, to date, has also seized more than 7,762 kilogrammes of ganja at the country’s south-western border.

“I want to ensure our partners that the Jamaican Government remains committed to the fight against the illicit trafficking of narcotics and the war on drugs generally, but more so the fight to save lives,” said the prime minister.

He also noted that international and domestic partners are vital for the elimination of the drug trade and urged for greater collaboration among countries in order to tackle the issue of illicit drugs.


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