Kaohsiung police yesterday announced they had uncovered more than 10kg heroin entering the country from Vietnam.
Police arrested three men at the Taiwan Taoyuan International Airport late on Friday night allegedly attempting to bring the heroin into the country.
Kaohsiung police officer Wang Chung-jung (汪忠榮) told a press conference that suspect "Wu Chien-min (吳健銘), 26, a graduate from medical college, informed police that he transported hero-in for a total of NT$600,000 [US$18,250] to pay off his college tuition loans and credit card debt."
Wang said another suspect, Lin Cheng-tai (
According to Wang, another suspect, Lee Chien-wei (
The three suspects had no previous criminal records, Wang said.
Kaohsiung police received a tip-off about the operation which led them to northern Taiwan, Wang added.
Police said they are still looking for a man who is alleged to have persuaded the three to transport the heroin for him.
"The man treated the three suspects to foreign trips, gave them first class plane tickets, and asked them to bring heroin back into the county," Wang said.
Wang said both Wu and Lin were paid NT$300,000 to take part in the smuggling operation. The suspects transported the heroin in several coffee containers, police said.
Wang said the three would be charged with transporting narcotics, which would could lead to life imprisonment or possibly the death sentence.