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Three more persons linked to 3,000 kg heroin seizure held

The agency developed the input and intercepted two containers purportedly carrying the contraband.

The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) has arrested three more persons, two of them Afghan nationals, in connection with the seizure of about 3,000 kg of heroin at Mundra port in Gujarat.

The agency has so far arrested five persons, including a couple from Chennai who held the import-expert licence on the basis of which the consignment was imported from Afghanistan in the garb of Talc stones, as alleged.

“Some more arrests in the case are likely. Searches have also been carried out at a warehouse and about 25 kg of heroin has been seized. Based on the evidence collected so far, it has been established that the contraband was sent from Afghanistan via the Bandar Abbas port in Iran,” said an official.

The sailing time from the Bandar Abbas port to the Mundra port is about two days. Therefore, the agency suspects the consignment was dispatched after the Taliban took over Kabul in August.

The breakthrough in the case came after the DRI received a tip-off about a consignment being imported by Aashi Trading Company, based in Andhra Pradesh’s Vijayawada, declared as semi-processed Talc stones.

The agency developed the input and intercepted two containers purportedly carrying the contraband.

After the experts from the Forensic Science Laboratory in Gandhinagar (Gujarat) confirmed the presence of heroin, the containers were impounded under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act.

The DRI has found that another consignment was imported in June through the same module. However, it is yet to determine if the accused persons had smuggled in heroin in the past as well.

After the seizure, said to be one of the largest in the world, the agency has conducted searches in Delhi, Chennai, Ahmedabad, Gandhidham and Mandvi in Gujarat. The operation is still under way, said the official.

The company, which allegedly sent the consignment, reportedly has its office in Kandahar.

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