Narcotic drugs and potent substances were seized by the Interagency Mobile Teams

The initiative on establishing the Interagency Mobile Teams (IMT) funded by the Government of Japan, which employs comparative advantage and specifics of different law enforcement agencies contributes to more efficient joint work in counter-narcotics and transnational organized crime investigations through enhancement of interagency communication, coordination, and cooperation.

On April 17, as a result of the increased efficiency on interagency cooperation and operative search activities conducted by the State Security Service officers in Bukhara region in the frame of countering illicit drug trafficking, a group of drug traffickers were arrested. Law enforcement officers detained drug smugglers selling 1 kg 681 gr of opium for $9,100 in Karakol district of Bukhara. Also, during the initial investigation, it was revealed that the trafficker had additional 1 kg 68 gr of opium in his residence for further sale which was documented in procedural order in the presence of attesting witnesses.

The second phase of the operation was jointly conducted by the officers of State Security Service, State Customs Committee and Ministry of Internal Affairs (IMT in Bukhara), after receiving information that the seized drugs were brought by Afghan drug couriers. As a result, an Afghan citizen was caught while selling 940 gr of opium in Bukhara for $2,500.

It it worthy to note that the drugs were smuggled into the country by other Afghan drug couriers, avoiding the customs control post. Total 3 kg 689 gr of "opium" was confiscated due to the operation.

IMT officers in Andijan detained a drugs smuggler with 5 kg 311 gr of “hashish”, delivered by Kyrgyz drugs traffickers. In addition, 224 gr of "tropicamide" potent drugs were found at his residence and registered. A criminal case was filed against two men by the Investigation Department of the State Security Service of  Andijan region.

The Interagency Mobile Teams are the result of the joint efforts of the Government of Uzbekistan and UNODC Regional Office in Central Asia. This initiative was supported at the highest level in the country with the Decree of the President of the Republic of Uzbekistan "On measures to ensure the effective use of equipment, technical means and vehicles, provided within the framework of the implementation of the Programme of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime for Central Asia (2015-2019)".

First Interagency Mobile Teams were established in Uzbekistan in 2018. To date 13 Interagency Mobile Teams (IMTs) and one Operation Coordination Team (OCT) created and operationalized by officers from several beneficiary agencies: State Security Service of the Republic of Uzbekistan, Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Republic of Uzbekistan  and State Customs Committee of the Republic of Uzbekistan, to counter trafficking of Afghan narcotics in and transiting though Uzbekistan in close cooperation with existing units of the competent law enforcement agencies.

The National Information Analytical Centre on Drug Control (NCDC) under the Cabinet of Ministers of the Republic of Uzbekistan is designated as the national coordinator. The Department on Combating Economic Crimes under the General Prosecutor’s Office also acts as a focal point for financial backtracking of significant cases to address money laundering issues.

On March 2020 - Japan Government and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) signed a grant agreement to continue the support of UNODC initiatives on countering illicit drug trafficking and transnational organized crime through enhancing regional cross border cooperation in Central Asia. To focus on further strengthening counter-narcotics capacities of the law enforcement agencies of Uzbekistan in the face of the evolving drug situation, US$ 2.3 million were allocated to implement an Uzbekistan-UNODC joint initiative on establishing Interagency Mobile Teams.

 

Notes: pictures of seized illicit substances are from https://t.me/xavfsizlik_uz 
 
the Russian version is here - Русская версия здесь