Man busted for making massive amount of illegal drug in Gumi - The Korea Times
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Man busted for making massive amount of illegal drug in Gumi

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This photo shows the equipment set up inside the residence of the man who allegedly made methamphetamine in Gumi, North Gyeongsang Province, after studying how to do it online. Courtesy of the Busan Metropolitan Police Agency
This photo shows the equipment set up inside the residence of the man who allegedly made methamphetamine in Gumi, North Gyeongsang Province, after studying how to do it online. Courtesy of the Busan Metropolitan Police Agency

By Ko Dong-hwan

A man who allegedly made methamphetamine ― an amount described as "enough for 33,000 people" ― at his residence in Gumi has been arrested.

The Busan Metropolitan Police Agency's narcotics investigation team said on July 19 that the suspect, in his 30s, was arrested in Busan. He was visiting the city to meet a potential buyer interested in his homemade drug. Police said that they apprehended the two after being tipped off about the deal.

The amount of the illegal drug produced by the man was about 1 kilogram, worth 3.3 billion won ($2.86 million).

He allegedly made it in his rooftop one-room studio flat, which he had rented starting from last April. He rented two one-room units on the top floor of the building, thinking that the smell from the drug-making process could alert people to his activities.

He purchased all the equipment needed to make the drug at local hardware stores, including: burners for boiling, a centrifugal separator to extract the methamphetamine, and a ventilation system to remove the odorous fumes from his residence. The drugs he bought non-prescription drugs at local pharmacies from which to extract chemical ingredients. Police confiscated a total of 49 drug-making apparatuses and 13 chemical drugs.
According to local reports, not a single neighbor noticed what he was doing over the past three months.

He was discharged from prison in November 2020. The narcotics investigation team chief Lee Gi-eung said that the suspect first learned about making drugs while in prison and, after being released, continued to study the process online and via books.

Police said that there have been increasing cases of illegal homemade drugs and distribution. Last February, a group of people were caught making illegal homemade methamphetamine an amount described as "enough for 23,000 people" ― at an officetel in Seoul's Yangcheon District.

Such cases have been increasing following Korea's stricter monitoring on package deliveries across the border, which was triggered by COVID-19 and has made it more difficult for drug dealers overseas to send in products that are illegal here.


Ko Dong-hwan aoshima11@koreatimes.co.kr


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