The pills were hidden inside furniture.—UAE Interior Ministry

Dubai police recover $1 billion worth amphetamine captagon pills concealed in furniture

by Pakistan News
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The pills were hidden inside furniture.—UAE Interior Ministry 

The United Arab Emirates (UAE) successfully thwarted an attempt to smuggle over 13 tonnes of the amphetamine captagon, valued at more than $1 billion.

The drug was concealed within a shipment of doors and decorative building panels. Dubai Police arrested six individuals involved in what they described as “one of the largest smuggling operations of captagon tablets in the world.”

The smugglers employed innovative methods to hide the pills, concealing them within 432 high-end furniture panels and 651 professionally crafted doors made of iron and wood. Extracting the tablets from these items took several days.

A surveillance video released by the UAE’s interior ministry shows the suspects attempting to bring the captagon tablets through Dubai’s Jebel Ali Port.

Authorities in the UAE have been actively combating the smuggling of captagon pills since 2019. In June of this year, the Abu Dhabi Customs reported seizing nearly 175,000 pills between the beginning of 2019 and May 2023.

While captagon was initially a brand name for a medicinal product containing the synthetic stimulant fenethylline, it is no longer produced legally. Counterfeit drugs bearing the captagon name are often confiscated in the Middle East, particularly in the Gulf region. Most global captagon production occurs in Syria, with the Gulf region being a primary destination for these drugs.

The rapid expansion of this industry has raised concerns in the international community. In response, the United States introduced the 2022 US Captagon Act, which linked the captagon trade to the Syrian regime and classified it as a “transnational security threat.”

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