Chemicals for one billion ecstasy pills seized in the Netherlands
(CNN) — Dutch police have seized a truckload of chemicals they say could have produced up to one billion ecstasy pills.
Police from the Netherland’s Zeeland province told CNN more than 100 bottles of hydrogen gas, 15,000 kilograms (33,069 pounds) of caustic soda and 3,000 liters of other raw materials were found in a tractor trailer in Rilland, 40 kilometers north of the of the Belgium border on Thursday night.
Local residents noticed the truck hadn’t moved from a public parking lot for days, and the authorities were called to investigate.
The police estimate the chemicals alone are worth around several hundred thousand euros — the largest seizure of raw materials the force has ever recorded.
The bust came a day after 35 cans of chemical waste — believed to be drug runoff from an illegal ecstasy laboratory — were found in the same town. Police told CNN they are investigating both incidents and that no arrests have been made so far.
The Netherlands is one of the world’s major hubs for ecstasy production and distribution. According to the European Monitoring Center for Drugs and Drug Addiction, production of the popular party drug is on the rise in the Netherlands and neighboring Belgium, with underground laboratories becoming larger and more professional.