Drug suspects tried to flush cocaine down toilet, police say

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 08 October, 2005, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 08 October, 2005, 12:00am

Suspects flushed some cocaine down a toilet and hurled drug-processing equipment out of a window from a Tin Shui Wai public housing unit in an attempt to destroy evidence during a police raid yesterday.

Officers arrested a couple - the tenants of the unit - and four other men, and seized 30 grams of cocaine scattered on the floor in the toilet after they broke into the Yat Wu House unit of Tin Yat Estate at about 2.30am.

Outside the building, officers retrieved damaged equipment including an electronic scales, test tubes and flasks on the pavement below.

'Investigations revealed that the unit was used to make crack cocaine. The finished products were to supply drug users in the New Territories,' said Chief Inspector Ng Kwok-keung of the New Territories South anti-triad squad.

'They kept moving to different locations to manufacture the drugs to avoid detection.'

Last night, officers were still investigating how long the public housing unit had been used to make drugs.

Police said the suspects, aged between 21 and 32, were from a syndicate which had been in operation for about a year.

Chief Inspector Ng said the alleged mastermind was one of those arrested and police were still looking for other members of the syndicate.

Investigators believed the gang made crack cocaine tablets at the flat. Each pill could be sold for up to $600, according to police.

Yesterday's arrests were made after a month-long investigation.

When a 21-year-old man came out of the unit at about 2.30am, officers swooped into action. During a struggle, other members of the syndicate locked the main door, according to police.

'Our officers took about two to three minutes to break open the security gate and wooden door to arrest the other five suspects inside the unit,' Chief Inspector Ng said.

Last night, the suspects were being held for questioning.