GEORGE TOWN- A drug syndicate has been crippled with the arrest of four "scientists", including two women, in two separate drug raids in Simpang Ampat and Bagan Ajam.
Police also seized drugs worth more than RM600,000, chemicals and a range of drug processing equipment from the two labs.
Penang deputy police chief Deputy Comm Datuk A. Thaiveegan said the four were nabbed on Dec 20 and 21.
In the first raid at a house in Simpang Ampat on Dec 20, a 43-year-old man and a 53-year-old woman were arrested at about 9pm. Police also seized 700g of syabu (methamphetamine) worth about RM180,000.
The suspects have been remanded until Friday for investigation.
He added that police also confiscated two cars during the operation.
In the second stint in Bagan Ajam, DCP Thaiveegan said police seized 1.2kg of syabu and 2.28kg of heroin worth RM420,000.
"We also confiscated RM5,800 cash and two cars from them," he said in a press conference at the Penang Road police station here yesterday.
He added that a 56-year-old man and a Thai woman, 28, have been remanded until Saturday.
All the confiscated items are worth about RM550,000.
All the four also tested positive for drugs while the 53-year-old woman and the 56-year-old man had previous drug records.
DCP Thaiveegan said police believed the suspects had been active in their respective areas in the past four to six months.
The case is investigated under Section 39(B) of the Dangerous Drugs Act, which carries the mandatory death sentence upon conviction.
In an unrelated development, Penang Narcotics Department chief Supt R.S.S. Batumalai has been promoted to the rank of Assistant Commissioner and will be based at the Strike Tactical Intelligence Narcotics Team in Bukit Aman.
His deputy, Deputy Supt Lee King Chuan, is now the acting chief for the department.