Kerala

Major haul of hashish oil

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Three of four arrested are Maldivians

In a major drug haul, the Kochi City shadow police seized one-and-a-half litres of high-grade hashish oil worth around ₹4 crore here on Monday. Four persons, including three Maldivians, allegedly connected with a Hong Kong-based international drug cartel, were arrested in this connection.

The arrested were identified as Shifa Ebrahim, 30; Azim Habeeb, 33; and Mohamed Safoof, 34; all from the Maldives; and Antonisamy, 30, of Kulamanickam in Tamil Nadu.

The hashish oil was hidden in shampoo bottles. According to the police, the accused were part of a Hong Kong-based international drug cartel that goes by the pseudonym ‘Kona Gold,’ engaged in smuggling of narcotics to foreign countries through south Indian airports.

Their consignments were mostly to Singapore, Thailand, the Maldives and Sri Lanka.

The Narcotics Control Bureau had been after the accused for long, said the police. They were nabbed with the help of the cyber cell following a tip-off received by City Police Commissioner M.P. Dinesh.

As tourists

The accused reached the city in the guise of tourists and were shifting between hotels. They were picked up by the City shadow police and the Central police from a parking ground at Menaka. “They were planning to smuggle the hashish oil sourced from Rameshwaram in Tamil Nadu to the Maldives through the Cochin airport,” said J. Himendranath, Deputy Commissioner of Police (Kochi City).

Their passports and other documents confirmed that they had travelled multiple times to the Maldives, Thailand, Singapore and India through various south Indian airports in December alone, he said.

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Printable version | Jan 29, 2020 10:02:19 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/major-haul-of-hashish-oil/article25874957.ece

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