A Hongkong Post customs inspector spoke with South China Morning Post about a spike in drug seizures. Despite having only 30 inspectors, Hongkong Post has kept up with a drug smuggling surge fourfold that of previous years.
Of all the seizures this year, drugs took up 78% of smuggling cases. Non-drug smuggling cases do not even come close to reaching that number. They likely never will either. The first eight months of the year – roughly a month prior to this article – the number of drug smuggling cases was up 19% year on year.
The number of drug smuggling cases in 2013 was only 131. This number rose to 525 in 2015 and the first eight months of 2016 have already shown 450 cases.
Customs’ Ellis Lai Lau-pak points to an increased level of cross-border e-commerce as a source of increased volume. More online shopping leads to more pieces of mail leaving and entering the city. “This was seen as an opportunity to smuggle goods,” he adds.
By weight, Gamma-butyrolactone (GBL) is being seized at an absurdly high rate. 135kg of the drug had been seized in 2015. The first eight months of 2016 have already pulled in 358kg with more expected.