The casual drug haul off Myanmar’s coastal Ayeyarwady region happened when anglers have seen a total of 23 sacks drifting at the Andaman Sea on Wednesday.
Locals were mystified by the crystallized material from the sacks, stated Zaw Win, a local official of the National League for Democracy party who helped the fishermen and authorities.
Initially, they supposed it was a natural diuretic chemical called potassium alum, which is commonly utilized in Myanmar.
“So they burnt it, and a number of them almost fainted,” he told AFP.
They told the authorities, who on Thursday combed ashore and discovered that an extra two sacks of the identical material — bringing the total to 691 kilograms (1,500 lb ) which could be worth roughly USD 20.2 million, Zaw Win said.
“In my whole life and also my parents’ life, we’ve never seen drugs drifting in the sea before,” he explained.
The huge haul was delivered to Sunday to Pyapon district authorities, who declined to comment on it.
Myanmar’s multi-billion-dollar medication sector is centered in southern Shan state, whose poppy-covered hills are perfect cover for illegal production labs. Made-in-Myanmar crystal meth — better-called ice — is smuggled from the nation to more profitable markets utilizing paths carved from narco gangs via Laos, Thailand, and Cambodia.
A research from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime says that Southeast Asia’s offense classes have been netting over USD 60 billion annually — a conservative estimate, based on specialists — owing to a complex smuggling and money-laundering operation.
In March, Myanmar police captured over 1,700 kilograms of crystal meth worth almost USD 29 million, which authorities said at the time was their main drug haul this season.