Border guards in Son La Province in northern Vietnam have arrested two Laotians attempting to smuggle 5,800 ecstasy tablets across the border.
The arrest was made late on Sunday while officers at Long Sap Border Post in Son La were patrolling the area for drug traffickers, assisted by an anti-drug unit from the provincial Border Guard Command.
Giang A Hang and Giang A Sa, both Lao nationals residing in Sop Bao District in the eastern Lao province of Houaphanh, were stopped by Vietnamese officers at around 10:00 pm on Sunday evening because of their suspicious behaviour.
The pair was pulled over on National Route 43 while crossing Chieu Son Commune, Moc Chau District in Son La Province.
At the scene, they were found in possession of 29 blue plastic bags containing a total of 5,800 ecstasy tablets.
The drugs were concealed inside a secret compartment on their motorbike.
After being interrogated by Vietnamese authorities, it was revealed that the two men had purchased the drugs in Laos and smuggled them into Vietnam with the intention of selling them.
In Vietnam, the storing, transporting or trading of narcotics is outlawed, and offenders face lengthy jail times or even the death penalty if found guilty.
Last week, Ho Chi Minh City police announced a drug bust they called the most widespread operation ever seen in Vietnam.
Police raids resulted in the apprehension of 15 suspects and the confiscation of more than 225 kilograms of narcotics, over VND10 billion (US$440,359) in cash, seven automobiles and other drug-manufacturing equipment and precursors.
Authorities open a secret compartment on the motorbike of two Laotian suspects. Photo: Tuoi Tre
Blue plastic bags used to store ecstasy tablets found in the motorbike of two Laotian suspects in Son La Province. Photo: Tuoi Tre
The ecstasy tablets confiscated from the two Lao suspects. Photo: Tuoi Tre