14-year-old among 2 arrested by Hong Kong police over illegal drugs

Clifford Lo, South China Morning Post

Posted at May 16 2022 08:58 PM

Hong Kong police arrested a schoolboy and two young men on suspicion of trafficking and manufacturing illegal drugs. Photo: Warton Li
Hong Kong police arrested a schoolboy and two young men on suspicion of trafficking and manufacturing illegal drugs. Photo: Warton Li

Hong Kong police have arrested a 14-year-old schoolboy and a 21-year-old man on suspicion of trafficking and manufacturing illegal drugs, while raids on two factory units led to the seizure of HK$530,000 (US$67,511) worth of narcotics.

Police stopped the Form Three student for an identity check on the grounds of suspicious behaviour on Pun Shan Street in Tsuen Wan at about 1am on Sunday. Officers allegedly found eight grams of suspected cocaine in his possession.

In a follow-up raid, officers seized 92 grams of suspected crack cocaine, 13 grams of suspected ketamine and two electronic scales along with packaging equipment and HK$1,504 in a unit in a Wang Lung Street factory building in the same district at 11pm on Sunday. Inside the unit, police arrested a 21-year-old man for drug trafficking.

According to the force, the 14-year-old school student was detained on suspicion of drug trafficking and manufacturing a dangerous drug, crimes punishable by up to life in prison and a HK$5 million fine.

In the early hours of Monday, officers raided another unit in a Chai Wan Kok Street factory building, also in Tsuen Wan. In the unit, police seized packaging equipment and illegal drugs that included 522 grams of suspected ketamine, 3.6kg of suspected Ecstasy in powder form and 347 boxes carrying 21kg of candy suspected of containing an illegal ingredient in marijuana.

Police are searching for a 20-year-old man in connection with the case.

“The haul of illegal drugs seized in the operation has an estimated street value of HK$530,000,” police said.

A source said the two young men were suspected members of the Wo Shing Wo triad society.

As of Monday morning, the two suspects were being held for questioning and none had been charged. Detectives from the Tsuen Wan district crime squad are investigating the case.

According to the force, there is a trend of young people being arrested for drug-related offences.

“Officers believe crime syndicates use money to lure young people into drug trafficking, and youngsters are also committing crimes without careful consideration,” police said.

The force urged parents to pay more attention to their children’s behaviour and help cultivate a positive attitude among young people.

Last Wednesday, police released a report detailing the city’s overall crime situation, noting that offences committed by young people fell 37.5 per cent in the first quarter from a year ago.

Figures showed that the number of young people arrested for various crimes dropped to 448 between January and March this year, compared with 717 during the same period in 2021. This included 52 people in the 10-20 age range detained for serious drug-related offences.

But the force said there were still cases where vulnerable young people had paid a high price for taking part in criminal activities.

Police highlighted cases in which four 13-year-old male students were arrested on suspicion of trafficking illegal drugs, and 11 girls aged between 12 and 15 were lured into prostitution. Ten of the girls were students.

Police described youth crime as a complex social issue that required different sectors of the community to collaborate in the use of education and publicity to help cultivate a law-abiding attitude among youngsters.

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