Cops seize Mandrax worth millions in Tongaat

By chillinwill · Mar 31, 2010 · ·
  1. chillinwill
    Mandrax worth R10-million was seized on Monday when police pounced on suspected members of a North Coast drug cartel.

    And experts say Mandrax is fast re-emerging as the drug of choice, overtaking heroin and crack cocaine.

    About 200 000 Mandrax tablets and 20 tons of base powder, used in the manufacturing process, were seized on a Tongaat smallholding.

    A couple were arrested and is expected to appear in the Tongaat Magistrate's Court soon, said police spokesperson, Director Phindile Radebe.

    A 30-year-old woman and the man, 48, face allegations of manufacturing, dealing and possessing drugs and ammunition.

    Various local police units - supported by the national Crime Intelligence Unit - had been monitoring the syndicate for four months before on Monday's breakthrough.

    Officers from the Organised Crime, Flying Squad and Crime Intelligence units raided a Newlands West home at 6am, where 80 Mandrax tablets and ammunition was found.

    Information received during the investigation led them to a smallholding in Tongaat, said Radebe.

    "All the products were kept in a newly-built three-roomed house, behind the main house of the farm, where the manufacturing (took) place.

    "Our intervention programmes are not only focusing on users, but also on manufacturers and dealers. We believe that by diverting our attention to targeted syndicates and dealers, we are striking at the heart of the problem," she said.

    A member of the Organised Crime Unit said the chemicals and raw materials found could have been used to make at least a further R20 million-worth of Mandrax.

    The officer explained Mandrax was extremely popular in the '80s but the market dipped in the '90s, when it was overtaken by heroin and cocaine.

    "It used to be concentrated in suburbs but it's now found its way across the province. This could have a lot to do with its cheap price; it sells for between R40 to 50 as opposed to about R300 per gram of coke," he said.

    Senior Superintendent Deven Naicker, the head of the Organised Crime Unit's narcotics division, said the recent successes of the SAPS in stamping out the drug trade was evidenced by the number of busts and the arrests of couriers across the country almost daily.

    By Dasen Thathiah
    March 30, 2010

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  1. bubbly nubs
    What an interesting drug of choice by the Africans. I wonder what makes this particular drug so popular? Maybe lack of other more common drugs?
  2. missparkles
    I don't think they use this one by default, cos they can't get most others. Rather it's the other way around. They have access to this drug, and choose it over lots of others. It is a mind blowing high.

  3. rockbottom
    ooh the good old days of qualudes----if you ever got one youd know why--and people who have had them dream about them--it would be swims doc if available
  4. EyesOfTheWorld
    You'd think at least some would make it to the US and UK, considering how much those swimmers who remember ludes would pay to repeat the experience. SWIM only got to take methaquaalone once in his life (the lemmon 714's) and he would LOVE to get the chance to do it again, and would pay good money to do so. Sure a LOT of US/UK Drug People feel the same way.
  5. rocksmokinmachine
    I just saw this post and had to comment. In Johannesburg, there is a slum called Hillbrow. Where 90% + pure white heroin, the best crack one has ever smoked. Strong MDMA tablets, LSD and 'Mandrax'. Methaqualone which is smoked in a broken bottle neck on top of low grade weed.

    The drugs in South Africa are the best in the world, so SWIM says...
  6. w//e
    Yes sir, them were the days.......:)
  7. Terrapinzflyer
    correct me if I am wrong- but wasn't the government during the apartheid area linked to running labs and producing a wide array of high quality drugs to bring in cash?
  8. Alfa
    Please feed more information about this. I am highly interested in the geopolitics of drugs and governments with drug ties / revenues. I wish there was more discussion about this topic on Drugs-Forum.
  9. Terrapinzflyer
    ^^ In the early 90's one of the Sources for raw LSD was alleged to be linked to South Africa. The aardvark never really knew the full story- but years later researched it a bit out of curiousity - there are some reports from the truth and reconcilliation committee that Wouter Basson, who ran a germ warfare lab for the government under the code name "operation coast" had set up a number of drug labs, both in and out of africa, producing ecstasy and numerous other drugs, as well as smuggling large quantities of cocaine into the country with the help of the government. Funds allegedly supported the Apartheid government (keep in mind there where many international blocks to the apartheid government doing legitimate business at the time).

    I will try and research this more when/if I have time- am sure there is much, much more to the story. If anyone else feels like delving into this please do...
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