Woman passenger held with hashish oil worth ₹1 cr. at airport

The Nedumbassery police on Tuesday foiled an alleged attempt to smuggle drugs through the Kochi airport when they arrested a woman with 1.20 kg of hashish oil worth about ₹1 crore.

The arrested was identified as Ramiya, 33, of Thrissur. She was intercepted around 9 a.m. while she was on her way to Bahrain. Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) sleuths alerted the police after turning suspicious about her demeanour during checking at the international departure terminal. The hashish oil was recovered in the ensuing examination held jointly by the police and CISF. District Police Chief (Ernakulam Rural) K. Karthik said that a detailed probe will be held.

A team led by Nedumbassery Station House Officer P. Sasikumar, sub inspector C.P. Benoy, assistant sub inspector Bijesh, civil police officers P.V. Joseph and Reshmi P. Krishnan made the arrest.

Tobacco products

The Nedumbassery police also seized about 4 kg of banned tobacco products from various persons during checks conducted near the Kochi airport.

Drug network

The seizure of hashish oil comes a day after the arrest of the key accused of a gang that had allegedly smuggled in thousands of kilograms of ganja into Kerala. The arrested was identified as Russel aka Ammayi Russel, 36, of Thodupuzha. He was nabbed by a special investigation squad formed by Mr. Karthik.

The police accused him of having smuggled in and sold thousands of kilograms of ganja in the last three or four years. He was arrested from his hideout in the forest region of Thopramkudi in Idukki district after a three-day-long operation. Last November, the Rural police had seized 105 kg of ganja from two premium cars near the Angamaly KSRTC stand following months-long surveillance.

The special squad formed in its wake had expanded the probe outside the State and collected crucial details about the well-entrenched drug network. It was found that Paderu, a tribal village in Andhra Pradesh, was the hub of the ganja network from where it was being smuggled out to various other States, including Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Uttar Pradesh, and Rajasthan.

The squad had managed to collect information about Malayalis involved in the network. So far, six persons have been arrested by the police in the drug chain and the information received from them helped the police seize another 39 kg of ganja from a rented house near Kalloorkkadu.

Russel had gone into hiding following this, and he had been leading a luxurious life in places like Goa and Manali using the money he made from ganja smuggling. The police claimed to have gathered critical information about the drug network and remain confident of more arrests in the coming days.

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Printable version | May 18, 2021 1:38:16 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/woman-passenger-held-with-hashish-oil-worth-1-cr-at-airport/article34086932.ece

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