Customs on Tuesday arrested a 41-year-old housewife trying to smuggle 4.8 kg of party drug ketamine hydrochloride, worth Rs 48.5 lakh, to Malaysia.
After getting a tip-off, an AIU batch headed by deputy commissioner of customs Sameer Wankhede stopped Gopi Janki, a Chennai resident, at Chhatrapati Shivaji International Airport on Monday night while she was checking in to Malaysia Airlines flight MH 195. She was carrying a trolley bag, a shoulder bag and a purse.
On checking the trolley bag, the AIU officials found a white crystalline substance concealed under readymade garments she had packed into the bag.
Chemical testing confirmed the substance was ketamine hydrochloride, after which Janki was arrested under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act on early Tuesday. She was produced before a metropolitan magistrate’s court, which remanded her in judicial custody till December 3.
Advocate Ravi Hirani, who represented Janki, said his client was not aware the bag contained ketamine. “She was given the bag by some other person,” Hirani said.
AIU officials did find that a man had handed over the bag to her outside the Mumbai airport, but also that Janki, who is a homemaker, had been pressured by her family members into smuggling the drugs.
She was given 100 ringgits (about Rs 1,800) and free tickets to and from Malaysia for smuggling the party drug. Customs is looking out for the man who gave Janki the bag.
On checking her passport, officials found she had visited Malaysia four times this year. Officials are finding out the purpose of the other visits.