Jakarta. Greater cooperation within the Association of Southeast Asian Nations should make it possible to stop drug shipments even before they reach shore, Indonesia's National Narcotics Agency (BNN) said on Wednesday.
Speaking at the Third Ministerial Meeting on Drug Matters in Jakarta, BNN chief Comr. Gen. Anang Iskandar said law enforcement agencies have already been collaborating with their counterparts in the region to tackle the trafficking of illegal drugs, but said more should be done.
"Most of the drug dealers enter Indonesia through our borders with Malaysia, East Timor and Papua New Guinea," said Anang.
The BNN head added that drug busts involving Malaysian suspects were particularly common, and better cooperation with foreign authorities would increase the likelihood of smugglers being apprehended.
If the right information can be shared, Anang said, it would even be possible for arrests to be made on the high seas.
Last month, Indonesian authorities arrested three Chinese nationals and seized 157 kilograms of crystal methamphetamine in a major drug bust in Pluit, North Jakarta.
Anang at the time said the three men — in their 30s and 40s — were arrested with the “staggering” amount of drugs at a rented home. “This syndicate smuggled their goods through Tanjung Priok Port in North Jakarta,” he said.
Earlier in November, a West Kalimantan court sentenced a former senior narcotics officer to eight years in prison for corruption.The Pontianak District Court ruled that Adj. Sr. Comr. Idha Endri Prasetiono, the former anti-narcotics director of the West Kalimantan Police, was guilty of the illegal personal use of a car seized from a known drug dealer.
Idha, who was arrested in Malaysia in August for suspected drug trafficking, was still to face charges for this alleged cross-border venture.
The car belonged to Chiew Yem Khuan, a Malaysian national arrested in August 2013 for smuggling methamphetamine and ecstasy pills into the province from neighboring Malaysia and currently detained in a Pontianak jail.