Remain alert to transnational crime trends in the Pacific

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DEAR EDITOR, I have written several times to your newspaper about recent and substantial cocaine seizures made in Fiji, Samoa and Tonga, always quoting news reports broadcast by Radio New Zealand as the primary source of information.

Today, Tuesday, August 7, 2018, Radio New Zealand has broadcast more information which I believe is relevant to the Solomon Islands authorities taking careful note of in the context of transnational drugs trafficking close to home.

I will quote the information:

“The Fiji police have launched an amnesty to encourage people to turn in any illicit drugs they may have discovered.

“The two week amnesty started yesterday after two stashes of cocaine were found last month on an island in the Lau group.

“The combined weight of the stashes was 52 kg.

“The police said they wanted people to come forward if they had made any similar discoveries.

“There was information that people were trying to sell drugs they had found, the police said.

“People with information about drug stashes could call the police on a toll free number, they said.”

“Meanwhile, a security analyst says the recent discovery of significant hauls of cocaine in Fiji and Tonga will have barely dented the supply being smuggled across the Pacific.

“In recent weeks, Fiji authorities have seized two yachts with US$15 million worth of cocaine, and the police in Tonga seized 58 kilograms of cocaine in a raid in Ha’apai.

“A security researcher at Strategika said the haul was massive, but it was probably insignificant in the grand scheme of transnational crime in the Pacific.”

“One of the main tactics being utilised by the transnational crime syndicates is that they never use the same route for a long period of time. So they will swap.” Copyright @ 2018, Radio New Zealand.

Yours sincerely

Frank Short

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