2 Tonnes Of 'Khat' Was Seized From A Ship Container Arriving In Vancouver & It Looks Wild

The drug can give "a stimulant effect similar to amphetamine."

Vancouver Editor
2 Tonnes Of 'Khat' Was Seized From A Ship Container Arriving In Vancouver & It Looks Wild

More than two tonnes of the illegal stimulant drug "khat" was seized by the Canada Border Services Agency's Metro Vancouver Marine Operations.

The investigation began on October 4 when a "container of interest" was identified and sent for investigation, a news release from CBSA said.

The container was imported from Kenya and claimed to contain bags of tea leaves.

However, after an examination of the container, officials noticed that there were "discrepancies in the packaging and the substance within the bags."

125 bags of the substance was then sent for analysis, which found that it was not in fact tea, but khat. According to the CBSA, khat is "derived from a shrub and indigenous to East Africa and Southern Arabia."

Khat has been recognized as an addictive drug of abuse by the World Health Organization since 2005, and the release said that there are "no accepted medical uses" for it.

When the green part of the plant is ingested, it gives an effect that's similar to amphetamine, due to the active ingredients in the substance being cathine and cathinone.

The CBSA seized a total of 2,061 kilograms of khat from the shipment.

Joseph Chayeski, director of the Metro Vancouver operations division, Pacific Region at CBSA, said in the release that this incident "illustrates how thorough inspections of marine containers help to keep illicit and dangerous products out of our communities, which is a responsibility that we take very seriously.”

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