Turkey busts Iranian drug lord, captures over 1.1 tonnes of meth

Turkey busts Iranian drug lord, captures over 1.1 tonnes of meth
2 min read
25 May, 2022
Turkey captured over 1.1 tonnes of methamphetamine in a 'record seizure' and 'busted' an Iranian drug lord and his gang, according to Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu.
Methamphetamine is a highly addictive stimulant that affects the central nervous system [Getty]

Turkey seized over 1.1 tonnes of methamphetamine “in a big operation on drugs”, Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu announced in the early hours of Wednesday morning.

Authorities captured the drugs in both crystal and liquid form in a “record seizure in one instance”, the minister tweeted as he congratulated Turkish police following their mission.

The operation also “busted” an Iranian drug lord identified as RK, alongside “his gang”, according to Soylu, who gave no further details on the alleged perpetrators.

RK was reportedly detained by police on 19 May, after being caught in the Merter district as he was attempting to flee following a police raid on his villa, according to Turkish news outlet Daily Sabah.

Methamphetamine is “a powerful and highly addictive stimulant that affects the central nervous system”, according to the US-based National Institute on Drug Abuse. 

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The substance takes the form of a white and odourless powder.

The Middle East is a significant market in the illegal production and distribution of another drug, captagon, an illegal amphetamine.

In Syria - neighbouring country to Turkey - an illegal drug industry has flourished following 10 years of devastating civil war.

The war-torn country emerged as a hot spot for making and selling captagon, which has reportedly been known to travel north towards Turkey from Syria and trafficked by Syrian extremist organisations such as Hayat Tahrir al-Sham.

Turkey is not a large consumer market for the drug, but acts a distribution hub for it to other Middle Eastern countries.

Reports have also claimed the Syrian regime is involved in a regional crime network and engages in drug trafficking throughout the Middle East and Europe.