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Reputed Member of Asian Drug Ring Arrested

January 28, 1987|United Press International

SAN FRANCISCO — A reputed member of a major Asian narcotics-smuggling syndicate was arrested in New York after federal agents, acting on a tip, seized nearly five pounds of pure heroin at San Francisco International Airport, the FBI disclosed Tuesday.

K.C. Chen, 29, a resident of Hong Kong who has lived in New York six years, was arrested Thursday on a charge of conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, according to FBI spokesman John Holford.

FBI and Customs agents seized 2.2 kilos (nearly five pounds) of pure Southeast Asian heroin valued at $6 million Jan. 20 in San Francisco in a package being sent from Hong Kong to New York, Holford said.

The package was believed destined for Chen, according to Richard W. Held, the FBI agent in charge

Chen's arrest was part of a coordinated effort between federal agents in the United States and Hong Kong customs agents.

In Hong Kong, agents using information from the FBI uncovered an opium den, seized 4.2 kilos of heroin and arrested Henry Wong and Philip Ng, both 30, and both from Hong Kong, Held said.

The heroin seized in Hong Kong had an estimated street value of $18 million, according to Held.

In New York, Chen was ordered held without bail by a federal magistrate, Holford said.

Holford called Chen a "major player" in the heroin operation.

He said Wong and Ng are expected to face extradition to the United States to face charges.

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