Heroin racket: one more arrested

The anti-narcotics cell (ANC) of the Mumbai Crime Branch on Sunday made one more arrest in connection with the heroin supply racket busted last week.

The ANC had on Saturday arrested two accused, identified as Rajesh Joshi (52) and Krushnamurti Kawander (46), with six kg of heroine worth ₹12 crore. The duo are alleged to be the top members of a cartel that was responsible for 80% of the city’s heroin supply, with a wide network of distributors.

The third accused has been identified as Shivkumar Kawander (41), who was arrested from Charkop in Kandivali based on the interrogation of the first two accused.

“Inquiries so far indicate that he was a distributor and reported to Ms. Kawander. However, he is only one of the several distributors working for the gang and also had a lot of others working under him. The speed with which the heroin was distributed across the city after being received from Mr. Joshi could not have been achieved without considerable manpower,” an ANC officer said.

The officer said efforts are under way to trace and apprehend the kingpin of the cartel, who is believed to be based in south India. “The kingpin seems to be very cautious, as he took considerable effort in always distancing himself from the actual action, coordinating on the phone all the time. We suspect that he was also supplying heroin to other States and cities, and the arrested accused are being interrogated to confirm this,” the officer said.

The ANC has sent samples of the seized heroin to the Forensic Sciences Laboratory in Kalina, and are awaiting reports on its quality.

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Printable version | Jul 11, 2020 5:00:09 AM |

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