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Seizures of stimulant drugs down in 2020 but marijuana, cocaine higher

TOKYO (TR) – The amount stimulant drugs seized by law enforcement was down in 2020 over the year before but that for marijuana was up, the Ministry of Finance said on Wednesday, reports TBS News (Feb. 17).

According to the ministry, customs officials at ports and airports nationwide seized a total of 800 kilograms of kakuseizai, or stimulant drugs.

The figure represents a decline of 69 percent over the year before. The amount seized last year had a street value of 5.12 billion yen.

The amount of cocaine, left, seized by law enforcement last year was greater than the year before (Twitter)

Meanwhile, officials seized 116 kilograms of marijuana, an increase of 42 percent over 2019. The amount of cocaine seized was up 28 percent to 818 kilograms.

The total amount of all illegal drugs seized — 1,909 kilograms — was the third highest figure on record. It was the fifth straight year that seizures exceeded 1,000 kilograms, the ministry said.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, smuggling via airplane was down while the use of ships rose.

Seizures that originated from Vietnam totaled 6 kilograms, the highest over the past decade, according to Tokyo Customs.

The ministry views the amounts of illegal drugs seized in recent years as significant and will intensify monitoring.