NEWS

Fiji Police Commissioner: Drugs Worth $10 Million Seized In Last 14 Days

This figure does not include the alleged $31 million worth of cocaine found in possession of a Canadian national at Caubati.
19 Feb 2019 11:26
Fiji Police Commissioner: Drugs Worth $10 Million Seized In Last 14 Days
Police Commissioner Brigadier-General Sitiveni Qiliho

From February 1 to February 14 more than $10 million worth of drugs were confiscated by Fiji Police Force during various raids.

This figure does not include the alleged $31 million worth of cocaine found in possession of a Canadian national at Caubati.

Commissioner of Police Brigadier-General Sitiveni Qiliho revealed that in the Southern Division, drugs with street value of $4.8million were taken in while in Western Division, $5.1million worth of hard drugs were confiscated.

In the Eastern Division, $46,000 worth of drugs was uprooted during raids while $320,000 worth of drugs was confiscated during raids in the Northern Division.

Mr Qiliho confirmed that these drugs ranged from methamphetamine, cocaine and marijuana.

Methamphetamine which is believed to be produced locally and also brought in from overseas, cocaine from offshore sources and marijuana cultivated locally are now in police exhibit.

He said that a number of these drugs ended up in Fiji as we are seen as the transit point while the demand for drugs such as methamphetamine has grown locally, hence their push to eradicate this.

With marijuana, his officers have already started using air assets to identify the plants and are aware of the new ways of cultivation such as growing shorter plants have been noted. Mr Qiliho said the cultivators and importers of these drugs were getting sophisticated but police are catching up with them and will continue the crackdown.

Canadian national Joshua Aziz Rahman who was allegedly found in possession of 39.5 kilograms of illicit drugs, namely cocaine.   Photo: Simione Haravanua.

Canadian national Joshua Aziz Rahman who was allegedly found in possession of 39.5 kilograms of illicit drugs, namely cocaine.
Photo: Simione Haravanua.

How does it come to Fiji?

Mr Qiliho revealed that people have been sending drugs through registered mails or through international freight companies and some are being brought in through sea and air routes.

In July last year, drugs in similar packaging were found in Fiji and Tonga waters, giving credence to theory of it being dropped off to be picked up later.

What next:

Mr Qiliho has also specified that their target this year is to crackdown on drugs in Fiji. He said they will not allow Fiji to become the next Tonga and they will not rest till perpetrators are taken to task.

“I do not want to be remembered as the Police Commissioner who knew of the festering drug problem and did nothing. When I retire, my legacy should not be one where people say I did nothing.

“I want to do something for my “koilequ” in Navosa, my “tauvu” in Kadavu and my “dreu” in the Vanualevu drug triangle when I’m in a position to do something about it.”

Mr Qiliho thanked the members of the public for coming out to give information about this. Over the past few years, police force gathered intelligence over the drug problem and now, Mr Qiliho said time was right to act and the battle rhythm of war on drugs will only intensify.

“We are now in a better position to situationally and functionally disrupt current drug operations whereby we are also working closely with our neighbouring countries.”

Edited by Susana Tuilau

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