Border Force officers at the Manchester Airport have seized a large amount of heroin worth millions of pounds which was hidden inside a shipment of carpets from Pakistan in one of the largest drug seizures at the airport.
The seizure of the drug smuggled in a novel way was made when officers became suspicious of a 46-piece consignment of hand-made knotted carpets that had arrived from Peshawar via Abu Dhabi, official sources said on Friday.
A detector dog immediately alerted its handler to one of the carpets and further examination revealed a highly sophisticated concealment where the drug was woven into the fabric of the carpet. Several other carpets also tested positive for heroin.
Around 50 kilos of heroin have so far been found but examination of the load is continuing and the final total could be far greater. Two people have been arrested on suspicion of drug importation offences in London.
Linda Paul, Assistant Director for Border Force, said: “This is an extremely impressive seizure…At this stage it is impossible to put an exact value on the drugs because forensic tests have yet to be carried out. However, it is safe to say that we are looking at a significant amount”.