Oops, man panics and snitches on himself about $500 million opium poppy field


Originally published at: http://boingboing.net/2017/05/26/oops-man-panics-and-snitches.html


If you could grow $500 million worth of opium on 1 acre then the streets of Afganistan would be paved in gold. 2000 pounds of poppy plant is not 2000 pounds of opium. Do all news agencies just repost headlines without a thought these days?


The police always inflate the value of drugs seizures. If you grow something illegal, they weigh it and estimate value by street price.


Surely that money goes straight to Dubai, or to personal palaces and armies, though… right?

It’s hard to imagine a drug cartel saying, “You know, we have enough money… it’s time to build libraries, museums, pay for free college education, and have some decent paved streets.”


Cop math?


Yeah, $500 million for an acre of anything seems fantastical to me. Otherwise you’d hear about poppy farms getting busted constantly.


Right, the police weigh the leaves and the roots and the bucket it was growing in and multiply by $35/gram. Because they are the good guys.


Be cool man, we talked about this, we just grow them to get the seeds for the muffins at the bakery down the street.



Go back and search again. The opium field is an obvious cover for the real what-ever that he’s hiding.


“Umm … I like pretty flowers?”


Maybe he’s just an innocent Wizard of Oz cosplayer who likes to recreate the poppy scene from the movie!


Coming straight out with “I guess you’re here for the opium” has got to be a clue.


Cops like to weigh the dirt and then multiply by a large number - seems legit!


But even that doesn’t account for this “estimate.” Two thousand pounds at half a billion dollars is still $551 per gram — which is more than the retail street price of a gram of refined heroin.

If this were 2000 lbs of pure heroin, it still wouldn’t be worth half a billion dollars.

And it takes at least 6-7 kilos of raw opium (the harvested latex, not the whole plant) to yield 1 kilo of heroin.

Most “street value estimates” are bullshit, but this is completely preposterous, highly-refined Grade AA bullshit; not the common street variety. (-:


My dad (who grew up in central Europe in the 30’s) told of parents boiling poppyseeds and giving the extract to their kids to settle them down.


I totally agree. But in Brunei the street price is $1,330 per gram. So that makes the haul worth $1,205,342,400 right?


Yeah, I heard about the great bourbon shortage of '32.


Um, Glen, you’re exhibiting just a liittle bit too much knowledge of the subject matter here…in a public forum

I mean well. I don’t want you to end up like the guy in the article.


Opium poppies are used to make opium, morphine, codeine, heroin and bagels.

In this case they also seem to have “accidentally” inflated the result by a few orders of magnitude…

Cop math.


Maybe it’s 500 million yuan? Which still seems nuts at 72 million USD. But within the reach of normal Cop Math.