VICTORIA: In a significant clampdown on drug trafficking, Seychelles police have detained eight foreign nationals and two locals in October for their involvement in the illicit importation of drugs.
According to Seychelles News Agency, the arrests include a Nigerian national holding a Gainful Occupation Permit, individuals from Malawi, Guinee, Kenya, the Netherlands, the UK, and three Ugandans. The crackdown signals a robust response to the growing challenge of drug importation into the country.
The Dutch national among the detainees has been charged by the Supreme Court with the importation of a controlled drug and conspiracy to import and traffic a controlled drug. The police disclosed that the other cases are still undergoing judicial proceedings while investigations proceed.
The suspects were apprehended in seven distinct operations and have been placed on remand in police custody. Their arrests, mainly executed at the Seychelles International Airport, were successful due to collaborative efforts between Customs and Immigration officers and the police’s organized crime unit.
Investigations revealed that the accused parties used commercial airlines including Ethiopian Airlines, Qatar Airways, and Kenya Airways to facilitate their entry into Seychelles, an archipelago situated in the western Indian Ocean.
In the series of arrests, police seized a substantial amount of narcotics, amounting to 5.3 kilograms of cocaine and 900 grams of cannabis resin, which were ingeniously concealed in luggage or on the suspects themselves. In a notable case involving the Nigerian national, authorities found 500 grams of cocaine at his residence.
Seychelles maintains a stringent stance against drug trafficking, and the arrests underscore the nation’s zero-tolerance policy towards such crimes. The severity of the offense is reflected in the potential maximum sentence of life imprisonment for those found guilty of drug trafficking and importation.