6 Arrested for Smuggling Codeine-Laced Cough Syrup in Shenzhen

By Barnaby Lofton, July 23, 2019

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Six people were arrested last month in Shenzhen for selling and distributing cough medicine with addictive ingredients. 

On Saturday, July 20, Xinhua reported that the suspects were caught between June 4 and June 6 with 2,010 milliliters of cough syrup, which included the compound codeine – an addictive opioid pain medication. 

The initial case opened up an investigation for Shenzhen police, who tracked down a gang of smugglers, including the head honcho, surnamed Chen. On June 17, the police busted the group in Shenzhen’s Bao’an district. Nearly 12,000 bottles of cough syrup were later found and confiscated in another city in the province. 

The police investigation revealed that the medicine was purchased in Hong Kong and that the group would either hire tourists to conduct border trips to help smuggle the syrup into Shenzhen or transport the cough syrup via truck.

Given its proximity to the special administrative region of Hong Kong, Shenzhen is often bombarded with smugglers attempting to evade Chinese customs.

Last November, 17 ivory smugglers were arrested after being caught in possession of 10 elephant tusks. Some use pretty clever ways to sneak goods past customs. In February 2018, a group used drones to smuggle RMB500 million in secondhand phones between the two cities. 

According to data provided by the General Administation of Customs, from January through May, there were 284 drug smuggling cases in China, with police seizing 567.35 kilograms of marijuana, heroin, codeine, methamphetamine and other narcotics.

READ MORE: Canadian Sentenced to Death for Drug Trafficking in South China

[Cover image via Pixabay]

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