중앙데일리

Drug busts up this summer, authorities say

July 29,2003
Seoul prosecutors said yesterday they have detained 73 people in the course of 95 investigations of illegal narcotics trafficking over the past two months. Many of those in custody, they said, are students returning from schooling overseas for the summer holiday and foreign residents here.
A recent raid on a rave party in central Seoul by prosecution investigators and police resulted in 13 arrests, six of them Korean students at foreign colleges and seven foreigners, including a U.S. soldier stationed here.
An investigator who took part in the raid at a downtown hotel said the number of people arrested that evening was unusual for Korea. Prosecutors did not release the name of the hotel, which had rented its ballroom to the group and was cleared by the authorities of any involvement in the drug use.
The Seoul District Prosecutors’ Office said drug use is becoming international here, both in terms of the people it has arrested and the types of drugs involved. The office said the larger number of foreigners living in the country and the number of students going abroad to study were both factors.
The hotel arrests also marked the first time that so-called “hash brownies” ― small cakes with hashish baked into them ― were seen in Korea, the investigators said.
A Korean college student returning from New York was arrested in May when a package of ecstasy and marijuana he mailed to himself before he left the United States was spotted by authorities when it arrived here.
An English teacher who used an Internet bulletin board to trade drugs has been arrested, as have some foreign entertainers. Three North Korean defectors were also among those that have been arrested recently for dealing in illegal drugs, prosecutors said.


by Jeon Jin-bae


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