The quartet was arrested separately in operations conducted Monday in Gakenke, Nyabihu, and Musanze districts.
Police identified the suspects as Theogene Twizerimana, 28, Edmond Iradukunda, 25, Ange Uwimana, 18, and one only identified as Twizerimana, 24.
RNP spokesperson, Commissioner of Police (CP) John Bosco Kabera said the “targeted operations” were conducted concurrently at about 10 pm, in the three districts as a response to “credible information from the public on their criminal dealings and their whereabouts.”
“Twizerimana Theogene is a distributor in Gakenke District and is supplied by Iradukunda, who was picked in Kazirankara Village, Nyanitana Cell of Shyira Sector in Nyabihu. But the whole distribution chain starts with Ange Uwimana, who supplies both,” CP Kabera said.
Theogene Twizerimana was at the time arrested with 1003 pellets of cannabis supplied to him by Iradukunda earlier that day.
Another member of the ring only identified as Twizerimana was arrested in Musanze, Muhoza Sector, Kigombe Cell in Nyamuremure Village with 503 rolls of cannabis.
“These were coordinated operations by the Anti-Narcotics Unit, which responded to credible information from the public, and this proactive ideology is playing a great role in breaking chains of supply by targeting identified major dealers, knowing the tricks and routes they use in an attempt to beat security,” CP Kabera said.
Last month, Police and partners in Justice, health and governance sectors disposed of 1600kgs and 8324 pellets of cannabis, 34157 sachets of assorted illicit gin packed in banned polythene bags and over 241,000 liters of Kanyanga and locally distilled illicit substances, which were seized in separate Police operations countrywide in the previous three months.
Between July 2018 and July 2019, Police seized over 5500 liters of kanyanga and over 200kgs of cannabis in the three districts of Nyagatare, Gicumbi, and Burera alone. Over 1900kgs of mayirungi (khat) were also seized in Gicumbi alone in the same period.
“Narcotic drugs and psychotropic substances are a serious concern to which we respond decisively and collectively with other security, justice, health and governance institutions as well as the general public,” CP Kabera said.
“We strengthened operations to bring suspected dealers to justice; and awareness campaigns to educate especially the young people on ill-effects of abusing in an effort to prevent new users," he added.
Last week, Police arrested three other major drug dealers with combined 10kgs and 11, 618 pellets of cannabis.
Last month, a couple was arrested in Gacuriro, Gasabo District with five bundles (40000 pellets) of cannabis, and a Congolese registered vehicle was impounded on July 14, in Rubavu District transporting about 200kgs of cannabis, concealed in 14 sacks.
Anyone convicted as a major drug dealer, under the new penal code especially in its article 263, faces between 20 years and life imprisonment.