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Cross-strait amphetamine ring busted by authorities

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- The Criminal Investigation Bureau (CIB) announced that it busted a cross-strait drug trafficking operation on July 31, seizing 60 kilograms of amphetamine, worth NT$72 million at current market prices, at an offshore Kinmen island port.

During raids conducted separately at the Kinmen port and in Kaohsiung and Taichung cities, three suspects were arrested. They are a 64-year-old surnamed Lee, Chao, 52, and Hung, 36, the CIB said.

The CIB said mainland Chinese police recently informed the bureau that they intercepted information claiming that a cross-strait drug-trafficking ring, allegedly headed by Lee, has been sending narcotics to Taiwan from China via the Mini Three Links, since this March.

The information sharing was done under the Cross-strait Joint Fight against Crime and Mutual Legal Assistance Agreement (兩岸共同打擊犯罪協議), the CIB said.

The “Mini Three Links” refers to direct sea transportation links between Kinmen and Matsu and several ports in mainland China's Fujian province that are around 40 kilometers away.

After months of preparation, police authorities launched the raids at the Kinmen port and the three suspects' residences on July 31.

During the raid at the port, police found a container imported by the ring from China. It was claimed that the container held only granite slabs, but it was found to contain 60 kilograms of amphetamine, worth NT$72 million at current market prices.

The case is now being investigated by the Kinmen District Prosecutors Office and the Taipei District Prosecutors office.

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