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Okt '07

Police raid major drug-making facility in Batam

Indonesian police uncovered an ecstasy manufacturing plant scattered at four different locations in Batam city, arrested two Taiwanese suspects and confiscated Rp454 billion worth of the finished product in an operation on Saturday night (Oct 20).

National Police Chief Gen Sutanto told newsmen at Batam`s Hang Ngadim airport on Monday night, the successful operation was the result of close cooperation between Indonesian police and the drug enforcement agencies of Singapore, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Australia and the United States.

The operation began with a raid on a location in Pluit, Muara Karang in Jakarta, where an Idonesian man was arrested for possession of 49 kg of methamphetamine originating in Batam.

In Batam, police found manufacturing tools and 150 gallons or 568 liters of liquid methamphetamine worth Rp454 billion. They also arrested two Taiwanese nationals (Wang Chin I and Tsai Tsai Cheng) and four Indonesians (Jaelani Usman, Darwin Silaban, Syaed Abubakar, dan Apeng).

These facts again proved the drug trade always involves international syndicates, Sutanto said.

The drug made in Batam was not only marketed in Indonesia but also in mainland China and Taiwan, said Sutanto who was accompanied by the chief executive officer of the National Narcotics Agency (BNN) Made Mangku Pastika, Riau Islands Police Chief Brig Gen Sutarman, Riau Islands Governor Ismeth Abdullah, Batam Authority Chief Mustofa Wijaya and Batam Mayor Ahmad Dahlan.

The police raided four locations in Batam city and at each of them found evidence of a large-scale drug making facility.

At location I, police among other things found 990 gallons of aceton in 14 drums each containing 200 liters, 613 gallons of hydro chloride acid, 1,000 gallons of chloroform, 800 kg of sodium hydroxide, 75 kg of trichloride isocyanuric acid, 350 kg of salt, 1,000 kg of an unidentified chemical in powder form, 330 gallons of a chemical fluid yet to be identified, and procesing equipment.

The place was used to make liquid metamphetamine which would be transported to location II where the precursor drug was stored. Here police found two gas stoves.

At location III in the middle of a shopping complex the liquid metaamphetamine was processed into crystal form. Here police confiscated 150 gallons of methamphetamine or the equivaleat of 568 kg of “ice crystal” worth Rp454 billion (US$ 440 million), 34.5 kg of barium sulphate, 32 kg of salt, 21.5 kg of sodium hydroxide and 35 gallons of hydroclrolic acid.

At the shophouse police also found two luxury cars.

Location IV in the middle of an industrial estate was where the drug was dried by a machine, a process taking six days` time.

The raw materials to make the drug partly came from Taiwan and were transported to Indonesia by fishing vessels.

According to the chief of Singapore`s Drug Enforcement Administration, Russl Holske, the police operation in Batam was one of the biggest drug syndicate busts in the world.

Sumber : (*) Antara News, Batam

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