On February 8 a truck was captured in Italy containing 8 ton of marijuana. The trajectory of the truck had been Macedonia–Albania–Italy, with final destination Belgium.
The Prosecution of Serious Crimes has uncovered the way in which the truck with 8 ton drugs was able to cross two important Albanian border crossings, in Qafë Thanë and Durrës.
What can be concluded is that all state institutions have failed. Below we offer a list of all institutions and system that through their action or inaction enabled the trafficking of drugs through Albania.
Border Police at Qafë Thanës – The truck, driven by a Macedonian citizen, entered Albania on February 4 at the border crossing in Qafë Thanë. The border police only checked the paperwork of the truck, allowing it to continue in the direction of Italy. It is unclear whether the truck was already loaded with drugs, or was loaded in Albania.
Customs at Qafë Thanë – If the truck had already been loaded with drugs, the customs at Qafë Thanë failed to uncover it.
TIMS System – All vehicles and persons entering Albanian territory should be registered in the TIMS system. Neither truck nor driver were registered in the tracking system.
State Police – The truck was able to traverse hundreds of kilometers on Albanian territory without raising the suspicion of the State Police, and was possibly loaded in Albania as well.
Customs at the port of Durrës – The truck was not scanned with a Rapidscan scanner. The customs officials only checked the documentation of the truck and let it pass. The Customs at Durrës thus violated that decision of the government to scan every single vehicle that would enter or leave Albanian territory, as a measure to combat drug trafficking.
Border Police at Durrës – Just like in Qafë Thanë, the border police in Durrës didn’t find anything suspicious about the truck, even though its entrance in Albania had not been registered in the TIMS system.
Either these institutions have failed to do their job at the same time, or they have been all captured by crime. What is perhaps the most shocking of all is that the Rapiscan scanner in Durrës is under the concession of an independent US company, which, just like the Albanian institutions, now appears to be complicit in the drug trade that has overwhelmed the country.