Over 51 kilogrammes of illicit drugs were seized during a six-month long anti-drug trafficking operation, the Maldives Customs Service has revealed. The statistics, released by the customs, detail the types of substances intercepted between 17 November 2023 and 17 May 2024.

Cocaine remained the most seized drug, totalling 18.8 kilogrammes. Additionally, the customs confiscated 13.5 kilogrammes of synthetic cathinone, 7.4 kilogrammes of heroin, 4.7 kilogrammes of methamphetamine, 3.8 kilogrammes of mephedrone, and 1.1 kilogrammes of MDMA, commonly known as ecstasy and molly. Other substances seized include 910 grammes of hash oil, 451 grammes of amphetamine, 101 grammes of cannabis, and 25 grammes of synthetic cannabinoids.

The street value of the narcotics seized over the past six months is estimated to be MVR 100 million, according to the customs.

A week ago, the Ministry of Homeland Security and Technology warned the public about a significant surge in production and distribution of fentanyl-laced drugs, commonly known as ‘China White’, in the international market. The highly potent synthetic opioid, originating in Southeast Asia, is an illicit analogue of the analgesic fentanyl, sharing similar physiological effects to heroin. The authorities have so far not confirmed whether China White has been found in the country.