Police officers in Malindi town on Friday intercepted a consignment of bhang as it was being transported from the office of a famous courier firm in the tourist resort metropolis.
They arrested the purported owner of the 550 rolls of cannabis sativa and a motorcycle rider who had been hired to ferry the cargo from the offices of the courier firm to a destination yet to be established.
It is believed the securely wrapped consignment was transported from one of the firm’s offices upcountry and transported to Malindi as normal cargo.
This is probably a new method of transportation adopted by drug traffickers to beat the strict security checks on roadblocks mounted to control movements to and from the lockdown counties of Nairobi, Kiambu, Kajiado, Machakos and Nakuru. The Courier vans rarely go through such checks.
The Malindi Sub County Commander John Kemboi, who briefed journalists on Friday evening, said the hard drug was intercepted along Lamu road, but did not mention the courier firm’s offices.
The junior officers who sought anonymity however told reporters that the bhang was intercepted immediately after it was taken from the courier firm.
Mr Kemboi said the officers who were acting on intelligence reports, intercepted ambushed motorcycle rider and the alleged owner as they transported a large carton containing the narcotics
Speaking at the Malindi Sub County Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) offices, Mr Kemboi said when the officers opened the carton, they found a total of 550 rolls of cannabis sativa with an estimated street value of about Sh120, 000.
“On opening and searching the large carton, the officers found 550 rolls of bhang with an estimated street value of between Sh110, 000 and Sh130, 000 given that one roll of cannabis sativa goes for between Sh200 and Sh250,” he said.
Mr Kemboi, was flanked by the Malindi Sub County Criminal Investigation Officer, Mr Charles Kamau, said the police was still investigating to establish the source and destination of the cargo.
He warned drug addicts in the sub county that their days were numbered. Mr Kamau, said police officers had intensified the war against drug trafficking and addiction, noting that there had been a notable reduction of the vice in the recent past.
He told those in the business to stop the habit as they were destroying the lives of young men and women in the area.
Malindi has for years been notorious for drug trafficking, with hard drugs such as heroin and cocaine and bhang being the most trafficked.
In a bid to reduce the effects of the drugs among young people in Malindi, the government introduced a drug-withdrawal method using methadone as an antidote, but anti-drug addicts claim this method is being abused and thus not achieving the intended results.
By Emmanuel Masha and Rita Kariuki