Mumbai: DRI recovers cocaine worth Rs 19.79 crore at airport, one held

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) busted an international syndicate and seized huge quantity of white powdery substance purported to be cocaine worth Rs 19.79 crore. A woman passenger of Sierra Leone who came from Nairobi to Mumbai on Sunday was held in connection with the recovery, the ANI reported on Monday.

According to an official statement, the DRI said, based on intelligence developed by DRI, one female passenger of Sierra Leone nationality who came from Nairobi to Mumbai on March 24 was apprehended by DRI officers at International Airport in Mumbai, as per the ANI.

During the examination of her luggage, it was revealed that the items she was carrying viz. shoes, moisturizer bottle, shampoo bottle and anti-perspirants, were unusually heavy and rigid, the news agency reported.

Further examination revealed that all of these items contained a white powdery substance ingeniously concealed in them.

On testing the same using the field test kit, it tested positive for cocaine. A total of 1979 grams of white powdery substance purported to be cocaine with an Illicit market value of approximately Rs 19.79 crore, was seized and the passenger was arrested following her statement, the official release said, the PTI reported.

She was produced in court that remanded to judicial custody and further investigation is in progress.

Meanwhile, in an another incident, the DRI in Mumbai had earlier seized 9.829 kg of cocaine with an illicit market value of approximately 100 crores and apprehended two female passengers of Indonesian and Thai nationality who had come from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, a press release said, the ANI had last week reported.

The interrogation of the passengers and swift analysis of the case data revealed that the drugs were destined for smuggling by a syndicate based in Delhi and nearby areas.

While one team of DRI officers stationed in Mumbai placed surveillance and started monitoring syndicate activities, another team of DRI Mumbai officers was deployed and rushed to Delhi to apprehend the other key members of the syndicate, the release said, reported ANI.

The DRI Mumbai officers reached Delhi and they kept surveillance overnight and were successful in catching the prospective recipient of the seized substance who was an African national.

The officers laid a trap in Greater Noida with the help of local officers and identified the mastermind. During the interception, the mastermind got violent and he sprinted by pushing the officers with his full might. The DRI officers, in a dramatic chase, apprehended the Nigerian mastermind and his associate. The officers as well as the accused got mildly injured during the chase, reported ANI.

Subsequently, both of these members of the international drug smuggling syndicate, along with the two passengers were arrested by DRI, Mumbai, under provisions of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act, 1985, the release said, reported ANI.

(with ANI inputs)

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