COCAINE WORTH 143 BLN SHILLINGS STOLEN FROM UGANDA POLICE STORES

KAMPALA, Senior Ugandan police officers and their junior detectives are embroiled in a dispute over 13 billion shillings (about 3.84 million US dollars) worth of seized cocaine which have been reported stolen from police stores over a one-year period.

The racket involves the police aviation, counter-terrorism and intelligence units, according to sources. A police report under the Entebbe Crime Registration Book (CRB) 197/2014 indicates that 80 kg of seized cocaine were reportedly stolen from the aviation police (AVIPOL) stores in Entebbe, near here, last year.

A kilograme of cocaine has a street value of 50,000 US dollars. Sources also revealed that the racket has been in place for years and that instead of destroying the seized cocaine, heroin and other drugs, large quantities of the narcotics have found their way into the market.

Entebbe is one of the airports in Africa used as a transit route for smuggled drugs. The cocaine had been impounded from various dealers between 2012 and 2014.

However, accusations and counter accusations of dishonesty and stifling of investigations have been made by the parties involved in fighting drug smuggling. This has culminated in suspected victimisation and transfer of junior police officers.

The racket came to light after detectives took 17 separate samples from the stores for testing at the Government Analytical Laboratory (GAL) last year. Sources said the results showed wheat and cassava flour and other substances were substituted for cocaine.

Source: NEW VISION

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