According to authorities, an international drug ring has been sniffed out and 17 people have been arrested as a result.
These people distributed Khat, an illegal chewable drug, which was brought to New York City from Ethiopia, Yemen, and Keya.
Despite the fact that the drug is legal in many parts of the world, including the countries from which it originated, it is illegal in the United States as well as many other western countries.
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman spoke about the seriousness of the drug saying, “Khat is a dangerous and illegal drug with worldwide reach. Trafficking often funds other criminal activity.”
It is believed that a 23-year-old man from England was in charge of the drug ring, during which he would send large shipments of the drug to UPS locations throughout Manhattan. From there, his cohorts would pick up the packages and then sell the drug upstate and throughout other states, including Massachusetts and Ohio.
Most of the men arrested in the drug ring were from Rochester, Queens, and Brooklyn.
NYPD Commissioner Bill Bratton noted, “Through the far-reaching capabilities of our joint law enforcement partners, these criminals can be tracked down and brought to justice wherever they are located.”
This may not be a common drug crime, due to the nature of the substance that was being distributed, but it shows that anybody can get mixed up in a situation that can lead them to trouble with authorities. If arrested for a drug crime, the convicted party will find him or herself appearing in court to work through the case and learn his or her fate.
Source: New York Daily News, “17 members of an international drug ring busted for bringing Khat into America,” June 27, 2014