Korea: April 22, 2003

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 Australia has charged the 30 North Koreans forming the crew of a 4,480 ton ship with drug smuggling. Australian reconnaissance units tracked the North Korean ship Pong Su as it moved along the Australian coast and dropped off 110 pounds of heroin. Australian commandos seized the ship, which was trying to escape into international waters, on April 20th. North Korea has long been involved in the drug trade, often using its diplomats, and their diplomatic immunity, to facilitate smuggling and distributing illegal drugs. For over a decade, North Korean diplomats have apparently been told to raise their own operating funds any way they can. With hundreds of North Korean diplomatic personnel arrested or expelled for smuggling, it's no secret what North Korean diplomats specialize in. It will be interesting to find out what part of the North Korean government the Pong Su worked for.

 

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