Hong Kong Customs seizes HK$24 million worth of suspected ketamine at Hong Kong International Airport, 4 arrested

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30th November 2023 – (Hong Kong) Hong Kong Customs made a significant breakthrough on 28th November when they seized approximately 50 kilograms of suspected ketamine at Hong Kong International Airport. The estimated market value of the seized drugs is around $24 million. As a result of the operation, four individuals believed to be associated with the case were apprehended.

The seizure was made following a comprehensive risk assessment conducted by Customs officers. They meticulously inspected an air cargo consignment originating from Germany, which was declared to contain sodium hydrogen carbonate, commonly known as baking soda. However, upon closer examination, the Customs officers discovered a concealed batch of suspected ketamine inside two packaging bags of baking soda.

After the initial discovery, Customs officers wasted no time and launched a controlled-delivery operation on the same day. The operation culminated in the arrest of three men, aged between 20 and 38, in Aberdeen during the evening. Another individual, a 22-year-old man believed to be linked to the case, was apprehended in Choi Hung on 29th November.

The three men arrested in Aberdeen have been jointly charged with one count of attempting to traffic in a dangerous drug. They are scheduled to appear before the Eastern Magistrates’ Courts on 1st December. On the other hand, the 22-year-old suspect arrested in Choi Hung has been released on bail pending further investigation.

In light of this incident, Hong Kong Customs issued a reminder to the general public, urging them to remain vigilant and refrain from engaging in drug trafficking activities for monetary gain. Individuals are strongly advised against accepting requests or assignments from third parties to transport controlled items into or out of Hong Kong. Furthermore, they should avoid carrying unidentified items on behalf of others and refrain from disclosing personal information or home addresses to individuals requesting parcels or goods on their behalf.

Trafficking in a dangerous drug is a grave offence under the Dangerous Drugs Ordinance. Upon conviction, offenders can face severe penalties, including a fine of up to $5 million and life imprisonment.