Rwanda National Police (RNP), on Friday 19, arrested a woman identified as Marina Nyirahabimana, 33, in Nyarusange cell, Kirimbi sector in Nyamasheke District with three sacks of cannabis weighing 80kgs.
Nyirahabimana was arrested at about 5am following a Police search at her house located in Mushungwe Village, where the three sacks of cannabis were recovered.
According to Chief Inspector of Police (CIP) Bonaventure Twizere Karekezi, the Police spokesperson for the Western region, Nyirahabimana had just received the consignment of narcotics from her Congolese suppliers when the Police weighed in and arrested her.
“Nyirahabimana was on the list of major drug dealers and supplying other dealers in different parts of the country, she was being trailed to arrest her in the act,” CIP Karekezi said.
He added: “In the wee hours of Friday, Police in Nyamasheke received information from a resident versed with Nyirahabimana’s criminal operations, that she had just received a new consignment of narcotics from her suppliers in the Democratic Republic of Congo, who sneaked the drugs into Rwanda by boat through Lake Kivu.
Police officers were immediately deployed; they arrested Nyirahabimana at her home with the three sacks of cannabis.”
Nyirahabimana admitted to the crime adding that she had ordered for the 80kgs from her Congolese suppliers. She further disclosed that they met in Lake Kivu earlier that night and that she paid them Frw200, 000, half of what they had agreed for the 80kgs of cannabis, with the remaining balance to be paid after selling the narcotics.
CIP Karekezi said that these are part of the ongoing operations aimed at breaking trafficking chains as well as local distribution channels.
“There are individuals and groups listed as drug dealers, either as major suppliers or as retailers compiled with the help of the people. Like Nyirahabimana and other drug dealers arrested in previous operations, those still involved will also be arrested if they don’t desist from these criminal acts now. Anyone still involves should wary that he or she is also being watched,” CIP Karekezi warned.
The arrest of Nyirahabimana came few days after two other drug dealers were arrested separately in Nyabihu and Rubavu districts with combined 3446 pellets of cannabis.
Last week, more than 420kgs of cannabis seized from arrested dealers in Nyabihu District were disposed of. More than 340kgs of cannabis were also disposed of in Kigali late last month.
At least 200kgs of cannabis and 1,120 litres of kanyanga, an illicit crude gin, were also destroyed early this week in Nyamasheke and Nyagatare districts, respectively.
Cannabis is listed as a “very several drug” under the Ministerial Order No.001/MoH/2019 of 04/03/2019 establishing the list of narcotic drugs and their categorization.
Under article 263 of the law determining offences and penalties in general in Rwanda, anyone convicted for dealing in “very severe narcotic drugs” faces between 20 years and life in prison and a fine of between Frw20 million Frw30 million.