The Chittoor police on Saturday seized 5.2 tonnes of red sanders logs worth about ₹2.5 crore along with a lorry and a car carrying the consignment, at Penumuru cross on the outskirts of Chittoor. The police nabbed four accused after giving them a chase.
Superintendent of Police S. Senthil Kumar told presspersons that acting on a tip-off about the movement of red sanders logs towards Bengaluru, a special party was formed with Deputy SP (Law and Order) N. Sudhakar Reddy, which took up random checks at Penumuru cross in the early hours.
On noticing the police the lorry and the car, coming from Tirupati towards Bengaluru bypass road, zoomed past the Penumuru Cross. The police chased the vehicles and intercepted them. In the operation, the special party nabbed the four accused, and seized the logs and the vehicles.
The accused were identified as Ummakka Sivaiah (31) of Kadapa district, who is reportedly wanted in 12 criminal cases involving red sanders smuggling; Kambham Krishnaiah (63), a resident of Nellore district, who got retired as thanadhar in forest department in Kadapa district; A Kiran (25) of Tirupati, and V. Balaji of Vellore town in Tamil Nadu.
The SP said that preliminary interrogation revealed that the accused allegedly had links with several smuggling operatives in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu. A case was registered and the accused were sent for remand at sub-jail here.