‘Stalker’ – largest-ever anti-drugs operation in UAE history

By Sheena Amos

The haul

DUBAI 14 May 2019:  “Operation Stalker”, the largest anti-drug operation in UAE’s history, led to the capture of two international drug smuggling gangs and revealed their method of smuggling drugs in spare parts of cars.

The operation was conducted by drug enforcement officers from the General Department of Anti-Narcotics of the Dubai Police, said Major General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri, Commander-in-Chief of the Dubai Police, while addressing a press conference in Dubai.

The Operation 

Dubai Police drug enforcement officers seized 365 kilogrammes of heroin, crystal meth and hashish, with a market value of Dh278.05 million (US$75.7m), the largest-ever haul in the UAE, Al Marri said while noting that the operation resulted in the capture of 16 suspects from both gangs.

He said the operation was a success due to its  accurate planning and precise execution, as well as the capabilities of the drug enforcement officers of Dubai Police, which led to the capture of the members of the gang that targeted young Emirati citizens and residents.

The operation was divided into two parts – Stalker 001 and Stalker 002.

Stalker 001: Based on the coordination and information received from abroad, this phase required monitoring of the movements of gang members around the clock for more than 3 months.

It was found that members of the gang belonged to one Asian nationality, except for one. There were 6 people in two groups working in private companies as maintenance workers. Their leader is an experienced drug trafficker residing in the UAE and in coordination with a senior drug dealer in his native home country.

The first events were on the 15th of January, where the anti-narcotics team of Dubai Police arrested gang members in the emirate of Sharjah when three of them were exchanging a bag containing 4.2 kg of heroin.

Another team, in coordination with drug control authorities of Sharjah Police, arrested two accused from the second gang in front of the building where they were staying while the third was arrested at Sharjah International Airport, where he was trying to flee to his home.

The total weight of seized drugs was 118 kg of which: 47 kg heroin and 71 kg crystal. The perpetrators had smuggled it into the UAE and stored it in Sharjah.

Stalker 002: All members of the gang were working in a car repair workshop in Sharjah. During the inspection of the workshop, the residences of the gang members and the stores, drugs were found.

The team found a quantity of crystal and weed buried in one of the areas.

The drug haul reached 247 kg, of which 211 kg are heroin and 35 kg of crystal anesthetic and 1 kg weed, plus Dh39,000 and $7,400 in cash, and two cars that were used to transport the drugs.