Sixty-five people have been arrested over the past two months for drug trafficking in northern Vietnam in a stepped-up fight against the illegal trade, police said Tuesday.
A coordinated effort by police, customs officials and border guards in Moc Chau district in Son La province, some 200 kilometers (120 miles) northwest of Hanoi, netted more than 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of heroin since Jan. 4, said district deputy police chief Tran Hung.
Hung said the arrests were part of a campaign launched by the Ministry of Public Security to crack down on drug smuggling during the Lunar New Year period. Son La is one of Vietnam's key drug trafficking points.
Vietnam has one of the world's toughest drug laws. Possessing, trading or trafficking 600 grams (1.32 pounds) of heroin or 20 kilograms (44 pounds) of opium is punishable by death.
About 100 people are sentenced to face the firing squad each year in Vietnam for drug-related offenses, reports the AP.
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