News24

Egypt seizes huge dagga haul in Sinai

2012-09-27 08:46

Cairo - Egyptian police have seized a 15 ton truckload of marijuana, the biggest drug haul in the country's history, which was being smuggled west out of the Sinai Peninsula toward the Nile Valley.

The truck carrying the drug, known as "bango" in Egyptian slang, was stopped as it tried to pass through a tunnel under the Suez Canal. It ranks among the biggest recorded seizures in the world, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

"The driver is being questioned for information about the party from which he obtained the drugs," said General Adel Rifaat, the head of security in the Suez province.

"This is the biggest one in the history of the country," he added.

Cannabis farmers have exploited lax security in Sinai to expand cultivation since the uprising that swept Hosni Mubarak from power in 2011, Rifaat said.

The rise in cannabis cultivation reflects broader lawlessness in Sinai, with the expansion of militant Islamist groups which the state is now trying to crush.

"The quantity of drugs coming from Sinai increased after the Revolution because of the lack of security operations which had targeted bango crops," Rifaat said. "The lack of operations against the crops caused big production of bango."

Of 22 330 seizures of marijuana recorded by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime, the Egyptian haul would rank as the 45th largest, or the 12th largest reported since 2010.

"It's definitely very big," said Thomas Pietschmann, research officer with UNODC, speaking by telephone from Vienna. It was bigger than any previous seizure reported by Egypt, he added.

The marijuana produced in Egypt is mostly consumed in the domestic market, Pietschmann said.

Global cannabis herb seizures amounted to 6 251 ton in 2010, with the largest annual seizures reported from Mexico and the United States of America.

Comments
  • johan.harlaar.9 - 2012-09-27 10:48

    Shame.....

  • roche.pienaar.3 - 2012-09-27 13:25

    I love it when they say that marijuana is a crop and yet they still say it's illegal. How can it be considered Illegal if grows from the F- ing ground? Wait I know! Because people are sheep and believe everything the government tells them and so the government outrageously considers marijuana a 'BAD' drug, and so the uneducated majority of society who i consider sheep believe it to. # Society with blinded narrow eyes. when will the Majority catch a wake up ?

  • 888facebuuk888suck888 - 2012-09-27 13:56

    Another tale of fear and dread!!! Are the masses supposed to breath a collect sigh of relief "we are safe!" What a terrible double-standard when it is ok for international corporations to grow dagga (GW Pharma) but not ordinary people?!? We know that dagga is harmless. We know that dagga is demonized for economic reasons. We know that the dagga laws are oppressive, racist relics. The dagga laws are false laws, built with lies. Too many poor Gogo's suffer with these racist dagga laws... People must support dagga and support the rural poor peoples right to cultivate and sell dagga. It is shame that these lies are still being perpetuated... the lies must end, we know the truth, Dagga is good. Peace

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