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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 11 December 2018

RAK residents to be offered cash reward for reporting drug dealers

New incentive part of bid to crackdown on offenders preying on young people

Residents in Ras Al Khaimah will be offered cash awards to help snare drug dealers spreading "poison" in young lives in the emirate.

The incentive scheme – which will be available to anyone who reports criminals found to be peddling drugs – is the latest effort by police to crackdown on offenders targeting young people and students.

The move was made under the directives of Sheikh Mohammed bin Saud Al Qasimi, the Crown Prince of Ras Al Khaimah, and is being backed by police, health chiefs and families alike.

The campaign was announced at the second edition of the drug prevention student forum, organised by RAK Police in partnership with RAK Medical and Health Sciences University.

Major General Ali Al Nuaimi, commander-in-chief of RAK Police, said the forum was a vital tool in raising awareness of the dangers of drugs.

The value of the cash reward was not disclosed at the meeting.

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It was not revealed if the cash reward will be given after the subject of the report is arrested or convicted, or after making a report.

Dr Talat Matar, head of the psychiatry department at Ibrahim bin Hamad Obaidullah hospital, said during the forum that 83 per cent of the targeted age group by drug dealers are aged between 18 and 25.

Families have thrown their support behind the initiative.

“Children and teenagers like to be rewarded, no matter who much is the reward, and this is considered a very clever idea that will help the police catch the dealers and save many others from their poison,” said Salema Al Rashidi, a 33-year-old Emirati mother of three who works as a math teacher.

“Drugs awareness is something that could be done regularly as it is a topic that parents need to understand along with children, it’s a true disaster and everyone needs to know that and be reminded of,” she said.

The cash-for-information scheme was also backed by another parent eager to see the supply of drugs cut off.

“It will definitely help reduce drugs availability,” said Ali Al Hamadi, an Emirati businessman and father of five children, aged between 7 and 18.

“My wife and I try to monitor our boys most of the time, get to know their friends and where they hang out but it’s not always easy as we are not always available due to work commitments.

“But this reward will help to keep them safe from drugs along with continuous awareness and supervision both in school and the house,” he added.

Information about drug dealers or smugglers can be reported directly to RAK police on 999.