Three French youths arrested with a large number of illegal drugs told investigators they were stocking up before the start of the Islamic holy month of Ramadan.
Police seized 4¼oz of cocaine, 8lb of marijuana, 4½oz of cannabis resin, and 2½oz of ecstasy from the three suspects, two of whom are brothers.
The three youths, aged 21, 24, and 27, claimed the drugs were for their consumption rather than for selling on to others and that the large amount found in their possession was because they were stocking up before the start of the Islamic holy month, according to La Depeche.
Internal Note Tells French Police To Limit Interventions in Muslim Areas During Ramadan https://t.co/2N6FpgKMnu
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Investigators say that they also found scales, knives, and a hundred or so small bags that led them to doubt the drugs were for personal consumption, as the trio had claimed.
At the time of the arrest, one of the young men, who had been released from prison earlier in the month, insulted the police officers and threatening to kill them.
All three appeared in court earlier this week but requested additional time from the judge to prepare their defence case. Their trial was delayed until May 19th. All three men have been kept in detention without bail.
The lockdown enacted to stop the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus in France has had major effects on the illegal drug trade and has led to shortages across the country.
Some law enforcement officials have warned that the shortages could lead to violence if the supply of drugs does not resume.
Violence Looms as France's Drug Dealers Struggle Due to Coronavirus Shortages https://t.co/5RAU8ThtR9
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Violence, especially towards police, has occurred repeatedly in the last several weeks in areas like Yvelines, where police reported nearly daily attacks from local youths.
Last week, many areas, particularly around the departments near Paris, saw several days of rioting along with attacks on police and firefighters, sparked by an incident between a motorcyclist and police in Villeneuve-la-Garenne.