2 arrested for smuggling heroin from Laos to Vietnam

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Narcotics police in the north-central province of Nghe An have arrested two members of a gang that allegedly smuggled heroin from Laos to Vietnam.


The alleged ringleader, Ho Su Co, 31, was arrested at around 2 a.m. Monday while driving a car through a checkpoint in Vinh Town, the capital city of Nghe An.


Police seized 60 brick-shaped packs of heroin weighing around 21 kilograms from the car.


Based on his testimony, the same day, police arrested Phan Thanh Ton, 25, a member of the gang, hailing from Nghe An's neighboring Ha Tinh Province.


The pair confessed to police they and other gang members bought heroin in Laos and brought to Vietnam via border gates for trade in northern provinces.


Police said they had been keeping a watch on the gang for about a month.

Investigations are ongoing.

Vietnam has some of the world’s toughest drug laws. Those convicted of smuggling more than 600 grams of heroin or more than 2.5 kilograms of methamphetamine face the death penalty.

The production or sale of 100 grams of heroin or 300 grams of other illegal narcotics is also punishable by death.

Vietnam officially switched from the firing squad to lethal injection in November 2011. But it was not until last August that the country executed its first prisoner with the new method due to the unavailability of stipulated drugs.

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