Of the 20 people arrested for their involvement in controlled substances in the last two weeks, Thimphu police detained 10 for illicit trafficking of controlled substances.

On May 20, police arrested a 28-year-old woman near the swimming pool complex in Thimphu for possessing 40 packets of dried marijuana weighing 96.02 grams.

The woman from Punakha was on bail when she was caught in Thimphu. She was tried in Phuentsholing dungkhag court for possession of controlled substances but was on bail.

A police official said that on interrogation, the woman claimed that the controlled substance belongs to her husband who was later arrested from Olakha in Thimphu the same day.

The husband, 41, from Paro confessed that the packets of dried marijuana (Puriya) belong to him. “He said that his wife is unaware of him keeping the dried marijuana packets in her hand bag,” the official added.

Both are under detention.

On the same day, police arrested three men from Changzamtok for possessing Spasmo-proxyvon (SP) capsules and dried marijuana.

Police seized 144 SP capsules and three packets of dried marijuana weighing 3.67 grams from one of them, a 22-year-old man. He is charged for illicit trafficking. From the two other men, police found eight and seven capsules of SP each. Since the alleged suspects possessed less than the prescribed quantity of SP in the Narcotic Drugs, Psychoactive Substance and Substance Abuse (NDPSSA) Act 2015, the men are charged for abusing controlled substances.

Thimphu police referred the two men to the Treatment Assessment Panel (TAP) since the Act requires suspects apprehended for substance abuse to be referred to the panel for assessment.

The TAP, consisting of a medical doctor, legal officer, addiction professional and counsellors will assess the severity of a person’s substance use and provide appropriate intervention.  A board member of the Narcotics Control Board chairs the panel.

Another two men and a woman, who were arrested along with a 21-year-old man from Babesa on May 26 night were also referred to the TAP since they tested positive for controlled substances.

Police found 1,152 SP capsules, 110 tablets of Nitrosun 10 and a small packet of dried marijuana from the 21-year-old man.

On May 28, police arrested a woman and seven men from the swimming pool complex area. From the three of the eight arrested, police seized a total of 133 SP capsules and 72.1 grams of dried marijuana. The woman and the other four men were released since they were found that they had not abused nor possessed controlled substances.

About 2,728 capsules of SP were seized from a 21-year-old man’s apartment in Olakha on June 4. The following day, another 29-year-old and 21-year-old men were arrested from Olakha for possessing 120 and 112 capsules of SP each.

Thimphu police arrested 67 people between 17 and 41 years for their involvement in controlled substances from May 1 until yesterday. Police referred 40 abusers to the TAP.

Officer-in-command (OC) of Thimphu city said police officials frequently visit schools in the city to sensitise students on the affects of drug abuse. “Those who come in conflict with the law are also educated on the issue.”

Dechen Tshomo