NCB makes 3,464 arrests in 5 years

National 1 minute, 58 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

THE Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) made a total of 3,464 drug arrests in the past five years, with unemployed people making up the majority of offenders.

NCB’s statistics from 2010 to 2015 showed that 56.8 per cent of individuals arrested for drug violations were jobless.

A total of 416 unemployed people were caught for drug offences last year, compared to 347 in 2014.

NCB also arrested 109 students for drug violations from 2010 to 2015, it said in a statement to The Brunei Times.

The figures also indicated that 575 Bruneians were caught for drug offences last year, up from 501 in the preceding year.

There was also a higher number (832) of private sector employees who were arrested for drug offences compared to 281 civil servants for the past five years.

The bureau said 93 per cent (3,256) of the arrests were made under Section 6(b) for consumption of controlled drug.

Despite more Bruneians caught for substance abuse, NCB said the drug situation in the country is “under control” compared to other countries in the region.

“Drug-related arrests constitute only 0.15 per cent of Brunei’s total population in 2013 and 0.14 per cent in 2014 (population of 411,900),” the bureau added.

Some of the drug offences included trafficking a controlled drug, possession of controlled drugs for the purpose of trafficking, import and export of controlled drugs, possession of utensils for consumption of controlled drugs and cultivation of cannabis, opium and coca plants.

Syabu or methamphetamine is still the most consumed drugs in Brunei for the past five years, followed by cannabis, nimetazepam, ketamine, ecstasy and inhalants.

NCB went on to say that it continues to strengthen border security even though there had been no cases of international drug syndicate couriers arrested in Brunei since 2014. The bureau said it is working with other law enforcement agencies to step up control at border checkpoints to monitor any drug trafficking activities.

“Measures are taken through efforts in the gathering of intelligence and conducting operational activities at targeted areas based on the information gathered.

“This includes joint operations conducted with other law enforcement agencies,” the bureau said.

It added that preventive drug awareness programmes to the public are carried out, while a supervision scheme had been implemented to guide and counsel recovering drug users and to reintegrate them into the society. NCB also provides treatment and rehabilitation programmes at Al-Islah Rehabilitation Centre through its therapeutic community programme that focuses on behavioural change.

The Brunei Times