An alleged drug lord known as “Asia’s El Chapo” has been busted in Amsterdam on suspicion of having run a multi-billion dollar drug operation, authorities said.
Tse Chi Lop, a Chinese-born Canadian citizen, was detained without incident at Schiphol Airport at the request of Australian police, leading to an international investigation into his cartel, Dutch police spokesman Thomas Aling said on Saturday.
“He was already on the most wanted list and he was detained based on the intelligence we received,” Aling said.
Authorities said Tse, 57, is the leader of the Sam Gor Syndicate, which reportedly dominates drug trafficking in Asia and the Pacific for $ 70 billion a year.
Tse, a former prisoner who previously lived in Toronto, allegedly led the massive empire while living in Macau, Hong Kong and Taiwan.
Authorities claim the cartel has smuggled very powerful meth to more than a dozen countries in addition to heroin and MDMA trafficking.
The syndicate has “been linked to or directly involved in at least 1
Jeremy Douglas, regional representative for the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), has previously warned that Tse is as big of a threat as other notorious drug lords.
“Tse Chi Lop is in the league between El Chapo or maybe Pablo Escobar,” he told Reuters.
UNODC estimated that Tse’s group raised as much as $ 17 billion in 2018.
Tse is expected to be extradited after appearing before a judge, Dutch police said.
With mail cables