China uncovered 1,481 drug-related cases involving foreign suspects in 2016, the National Narcotics Control Commission said yesterday. A total of 1,876 foreign suspects were caught for drug-related offenses and 6.6 tons of drugs were confiscated, the commission said, adding that online drug trafficking also grew.
Chinese police caught 21,000 suspects in a campaign to crack down on online drug trafficking, confiscating 10.8 tons of drugs, it said. China also handled 446 drug-dealing cases involving guns, covering 29 provincial regions, it said. According to a report issued by the commission, police handled 583 cases related to drug production and busted 438 drug-production sites nationwide in 2016.
The report said police uncovered 33 cases that involved more than a ton of drugs, more than double the previous year. There were also 78 cases involving more than 100 kilograms of drugs, a year-on-year increase of 32 percent. Police uncovered 444 cases of producing, transporting, selling and purchasing chemicals and equipment used in drug production, the report said. It also noted that China faces great challenges in controlling new psychoactive substances, saying that despite the country listing 116 psychoactive substances as controlled substances in October 2015, illegal drug producers continue to create new drugs.
Chinese police confiscated 430.6 kilograms of cocaine in 64 smuggling cases in 2016. Cocaine mainly enters south China’s Guangdong Province and Hong Kong from South America, and by the end of 2016, China had 394 registered cocaine abusers. The Golden Triangle in Southeast Asia remains the main source for methamphetamine consumed in China, it said. It also said the Golden Crescent, which overlaps parts of Afghanistan, Iran and Pakistan, remains the world’s largest area for growing opium and producing heroin.
China handled 22 cases involving heroin smuggled from the area last year, seizing 24 kilograms of heroin. The number of drug addicts in China is still slowly growing, the report said, and there were about 2.51 million drug users in the country as of the end of 2016, an increase of 6.8 percent year on year. Among them, about 22,000 people were under 18, and more than 1.46 million were 18 to 35. The growth in drug users addicted to heroin slowed, while the number addicted to synthetic drugs, including methamphetamine and ketamine, increased faster.