China's customs police seized a total of 789 kilograms of drugs at border crossings and customs checks in 2006, up 65.5 percent year-on-year, a senior police officer said Tuesday.
The customs police also investigated 335 cases of drug trafficking, up 91.9 percent over the year previous, said Li Wenjian, deputy head of the anti-smuggling bureau under the General Administration of Customs.
"The amount of drugs seized at customs has been on a rise in recent years, which shows that overseas drug dealers are transporting more drugs to and through China," Li said.
China established an anti-smuggling police force at its border crossing and customs checks in 1999. The force now has more than 9,000 officers.
From 1999 to the end of last year, customs police across China had investigated 1,034 cases of drug trafficking and seized 15.2 tons of drugs, GAC statistics shows.
During that same period anti-smuggling police also investigated 395 cases involving the smuggling rare animals, 265 cases involving illegal importation of foreign waste, 202 cases of importing pornography and 220 cases involving smuggling ancient relics, counterfeit money, guns, ammunition and rare metals.
The anti-smuggling police at customs checks across China have investigated 10,415 criminal cases involving goods valued at 132.14 billion yuan (US$16.94 billion) since 1999, Li said.
Li said a total of 13,086 suspects were arrested by the customs police over the seven year period, without indicating how many were involved in drug smuggling.
(Xinhua News Agency March 27, 2007)