International drug cartel trafficked 217.525 kg of heroin to India from Pakistan via sea: DRI

Representational image of Heroin and other seized narcotic substances.

Representational image of Heroin and other seized narcotic substances. | Photo Credit: PTI

An international drug cartel was engaged in trafficking huge quantities of narcotic drugs from Pakistan to India through sea routes, according to the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI). The drug traffickers were using fishermen to dodge the law enforcement agencies, it noted.

The investigation agency flagged its concern about the operations of the international drug cartel in the remand report submitted at the Judicial First Class Magistrate Court, Mattanchery, Kochi, in connection with the seizure of 217.525 kg of heroin from two Indian boats, Little Jesus and Prince, on May 18.

The vessels, which had sailed from the coast of Tamil Nadu, were intercepted by the Indian Coast Guard in the Indian waters when as were moving towards India. The boats were brought to the Coast Guard Jetty at Kochi Harbour on May 20. The narcotic substances were found packed in sacks, which were concealed in the vessel, said the remand report.

V. Jimson, the master of the vessel Little Jesus, and V. Dison, the master of the vessel Prince, admitted that the packages that were found inside the sacks and recovered from the vessels contained heroin. The heroin that was packed inside 218 packages was valued at ₹1,526 crore. The two boats were also seized by the investigation agencies.

While the first four accused admitted that they were aware of the concealment of heroin in the boats and were knowingly involved in the attempt to illegally traffic the drugs for monetary gains, the others stated that they were not aware of the illicit transport in the boats on which they were sailing. Though some of the arrested stated that they were out in the sea for fishing, there was nothing in the seized boats to indicate that any fishing activities were carried out, according to the DRI.

The act of procurement, possession, concealment and trafficking of 217.525 kg of heroin was a non-bailable offence as per the provision of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act, 1985, the report noted.

While two of the arrested were from Kerala, all others were natives of Kanyakumari in Tamil Nadu.

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Printable version | Jun 20, 2022 11:10:38 am | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/international-drug-cartel-trafficked-217525-kg-of-heroin-to-india-from-pakistan-via-sea-dri/article65447321.ece