RIYADH: Authorities in Saudi Arabia have thwarted attempts to smuggle and distribute almost 19 million amphetamine pills in the Kingdom, the interior ministry said on Monday.
The spokesperson for the General Directorate of Narcotics Control, Capt. Mohammed bin Khaled Al-Najidi, said 16 people have been arrested, including 10 Saudi citizens and six residents.
In the first operation, police cracked a criminal cell in Riyadh, whose members were skilled at receiving and distributing narcotic substances.
Five people were arrested and 10 million amphetamine pills hidden inside metal discs were seized, Capt. Al-Najidi said.
The second operation, he said, was in Jeddah and police cooperated with the General Authority for Customs to break another criminal cell, after its members received a quantity of drugs.
Five Saudis and five other nationalities were arrested with 5.8 million amphetamine tablets in their possession hidden inside a shipment of belts.
The last operation was in Al-Haditha Port, in northwestern Saudi Arabia near the border with Jordan, where a resident was arrested for attempting to smuggle 3.2 million tablets inside a potato shipment.
Capt. Al-Najidi said legal measures have been taken against the accused.