The Ministry of Justice’s Investigation Bureau is not exactly the place that comes to mind for those looking for a “high.”
However, the bureau’s headquarters in New Taipei City’s (新北市) Xindian District (新店) is home to a little-known display that simulates a “drug party,” complete with the aroma of marijuana, that authorities hope will educate young people on the potential perils of the nightclub scene.
The “party experience” zone is the centerpiece of the anti-drug exhibition hall that was established on the orders of former bureau director-general Yeh Sheng-mao (葉盛茂), who ran the agency from 2001 to 2008, to promote anti-drug efforts.
It uses changing light colors, shadows of people dancing, a vibrating floor and the smell of marijuana created by aromatic oils to simulate a nightclub atmosphere and show how easy it is to be sucked into using drugs by the fun ambience, exhibition guide Chang Che-chi (張哲齊) said.
The party zone also highlights the practice of some club owners of burning methamphetamines in their club’s air conditioning system to get their customers high without them knowing it.
The exhibition hall also includes a film about the bureau’s operations, a general anti-drug exhibition and a display of some of the drugs seized in raids over the past 20 years, said Chen Yi-chieh (陳奕婕), another tour guide, pointing to the powder displayed in one glass case — 4.7kg of cocaine seized after being smuggled into the country by a Nigerian.
Another of the displays is a high-tech touch tabletop that can provide answers to visitors’ questions.
Chen touched the tabletop surface to find out the distribution potential of 616kg of amphetamines — the answer is 4 million people, about the size of New Taipei City’s population.
The exhibition is only open for group visits, which last two hours and can accommodate 30 to 120 people at a time.
The exhibition is closed on weekends and national holidays.