Andhra Pradesh police have approached embassies of three countries to crackdown on sources supplying contraband substances, particularly cocaine, to Hyderabad, where the narcotic is in high demand among the elite.
The move comes after a total of 15 persons including 12 foreigners, eight Nigerians, three Ugandan and one Kenyan were arrested recently by Hyderabad police for being involved in supplying cocaine to various pubs, resorts and high-society people here.
"We have approached the embassies of Nigeria, Uganda and Tanzania to identify the nationals arrested by us, but a major problem is the genuineness of names of the accused," Central Crime Station (CCS) Additional Commissioner of Police S Umapathy told PTI.
He said the foreign nationals held in the drug supplying rackets might have obtained passports in fictitious names.
"Efforts are on to crack down on the sources as those arrested have revealed that they were getting cocaine from their gang leaders in South Africa, Tanzania, Nigeria and Uganda. The state police is working with various agencies to nab kingpins who are supplying cocaine to peddlers," Umapathy said.
In the last six months, the Hyderabad police successfully busted seven drug racket networks involving foreign nationals and about 600 grams of cocaine was seized from them, he said.
The ACP said the crackdown helped in exposing the drug mafia's link with Tollywood as their clientele includes actors from the Telugu film industry and members of affluent families living in posh localities.
The link between drug peddlers and Tollywood came to light when Telugu film actor Ravi Teja's brothers B Raghunath Raju and B Bharath Raju and their friend D Naresh were arrested while buying drugs from Chima Clement, a Nigerian, on August 19.
During interrogation, Nigerian and Ugandan drug peddlers have revealed contact numbers of about 50-60 customers belonging to the Telugu film industry, student groups and wards of affluent families, Umapathy said.
"With the arrest of 15 persons, we successfully broke the distribution chain network, but so far we are unable to break the transit chain, which may take some time. Police teams have already been dispatched to various cities," the ACP, who is also in-charge of the Detective Department, said.
The cocaine was being received from main agents in Mumbai, Pune and Bangalore, the police officer added.