Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc has asked relevant ministries and authorities to investigate the trafficking of 600 heroin cakes from Vietnam to Taiwan detected and confiscated by Taiwanese authorities.

Phuc, who is also head of the National Committee for AIDS, Drugs and Prostitution Prevention and Control, on November 26 requested the Ministry of Public Security to work with related agencies at home and abroad to promptly identify the origin of the heroin.

It was also asked to join force with the Ministry of Defence and the Ministry of Finance to apply effective measures to discover drug trafficking cases via maritime and air routes and at airports, border gates and sea ports.

The Deputy PM also assigned the General Customs Department under the Ministry of Finance and the Aviation Civil Authority under the Ministry of Transport to clarify their responsibilities in the case and take measures to prevent drug trafficking to and from Vietnam by air.

Taiwan police said on November 17 they had confiscated 600 heroin cakes totalling 229kg discovered in 12 amplifier boxes in a container transported by air from Vietnam.

They said they had arrested eight people and were pursuing other suspects.

Under Article 194 of Vietnam’s Penal Code, offenders who illegal stockpile, transport, trade or appropriate heroin or cocaine weighing 100 grams or more shall be sentenced to death.-VNA