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Cab hijacker 'on drugs'

A SHANGHAI man under detention after threatening a Hangzhou taxi driver with a knife and subjecting him to a terrifying two-hour ordeal had been taking illegal drugs, police said yesterday.

A married couple, who are friends of the man, have also been placed in police detention over drug possession.

The man, who police have identified as Hu Wenge, was trying to get from Hangzhou to Shanghai in the cab.

Urine samples taken from him tested positive to amphetamine and crystal methamphetamine, or "ice," Hangzhou police said.

Hu, 40, from Pudong New Area, was a drug addict, police said, and underwent rehabilitation treatments in Shanghai in 2005 and 2007 for his addiction.

Hu will be sent to Hangzhou Ankang Hospital, a facility for mental patients, as investigations continue.

Hu held the knife at the neck of the taxi driver, surnamed Liu, ordering him to drive to Shanghai at 3:30pm on Sunday, police said.

The taxi was cornered two hours later by Jiaxing police officers who were tipped off by Hangzhou police.

Hu surrendered after a 20-minute standoff and the driver was not injured, police said.

Hangzhou police yesterday detained the couple who came with Hu to Hangzhou from Shanghai. Three packets of "ice" were found in a hotel room where the couple were staying.


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