A freight train on the New Silk Road

Research on possible drug chemicals transport Chengdu-Tilburg train

A freight train on the New Silk Road

A police research has started to find out if there are illegal drug chemicals transported on the the daily New Silk Road connection between Chengdu in China and Tilburg, the Dutch newspaper Algemeen Dagblad has reported.

The Dutch police seem to have put the Chengdu-Tilburg train under the microscope. According to a report from AD.nl, the police want to run more frequent checks on trains arriving at Tilburg from China since they are afraid that drug criminals use them to smuggle chemicals used to produce drugs such as ecstasy and amphetamine.

Checks at Polish border insufficient

The most significant issue currently is the insufficient train checks on the the New Silk Road route, fear the police. China-Europe trains are checked on the Poland-Belarus border before entering EU soil. However, no further checks take place when they arrive in Tilburg except for special occasions when authorities suspect some cargo irregularities.

AD.nl reported that the Dutch police had run some unannounced checks in the past few years without finding any incriminating evidence. Now the situation is becoming more pressuring. Police already know that raw materials for making synthetic drugs (precursors) such as ecstasy and amphetamine mainly come from China. The fact that there are indications that these precursors might enter the Netherlands by train raises questions regarding border control reliability and how this could affect China-Europe connections.

Constant updates

RailFreight.com is contacting parties involved to acquire more details on the situation. So far, the source has not been verified by us, but we will follow up with any relevant updates. 

Author: Nikos Papatolios

Nikos Papatolios is editor of RailFreight.com, the online magazine for rail freight professionals.

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