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J-K transporter, wife smuggle 10 kg heroin worth Rs 50 crore from PoK; held in Ludhiana

The seizure was made from Jammu and Kashmir-based transporter Arbi and his wife at the Sherpur Bypass on Monday night. Residents of Jalalabad village of Jammu and Kashmir, the couple had smuggled the contraband from Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) and were bringing it for supply into Ludhiana.

india Updated: Nov 28, 2018 09:21 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Ludhiana
heroin smuggling,j-k couple held,ludhiana
A couple from Jammu and Kashmir (faces covered), accused of smuggling over 10 kg heroin from PoK, was arrested by Special Task Force with heroin in Ludhiana on Tuesday, November 27, 2018. (Gurminder Singh / HT Photo )

Over 10 kg of heroin, worth more than Rs 50 crore, has been seized from a J&K-based couple who had smuggled in the contraband from Pakistan and were bringing it to supply in Ludhiana, police said on Tuesday.

Acting on a tip-off, the special task force (STF) of Ludhiana nabbed Mohammad Arbi, 48, and his wife, Jamila Begum, 36, on Monday when they were transporting the 10.25 kg heroin in a car, they said.

The seizure was made at the Sherpur Bypass on Monday night. Residents of Jalalabad village of Jammu and Kashmir, the couple had smuggled the contraband from Pakistan-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) and were bringing it for supply into Ludhiana.

The accused were travelling in a Maruti Swift and the heroin had been packed in five packets and hidden under 10-kg of walnuts. The STF has also seized their vehicle. Arbi is a native of Rajouri in Jammu and Kashmir.

“The accused has confessed to have procured heroin through Pakistan-based smugglers in the PoK and bringing it into Punjab. Previously, he has delivered consignments of the contraband in Amritsar, Ludhiana and other cities of Punjab,” said Snehdeep Sharma, assistant inspector general, STF, adding that the Ludhiana unit STF in-charge, inspector Harbans Singh, had carried out the arrests.

“The STF suspects that the accused has smuggled contraband to other states also in his trucks,” said Harbans. Sharma added, “Arbi is facing trial in two cases of drug peddling in Jammu and Kashmir. He used his wife for smuggling, assuming that the police would not stop or check him after finding a woman by his side.”

He went on to add that the accused was in contact with cross-border smugglers through WhatsApp calling and a satellite phone. “We are checking if there are any terror links of the arrested accused,” Sharma added.

“A case has been registered under sections 21/61/85 of the NDPS Act against the accused at the Moti Nagar police station. We produced the accused before a court that has remanded him in six-day STF custody,” said inspector Harbans. In addition to the arrests, the STF in Patiala also seized 45,500 tablets of drugs like tramadol and arrested two people.

Caption

Senior STF officials addressing the media in Ludhiana on Tuesday. Gurminder Singh/HT

Strap/Blurb

Contraband hidden under walnuts

The five packets of heroin were hidden under 10-kg of walnuts in the Maruti Suzuki they were on

Quote

The accused has confessed to have procured heroin through Pakistan-based smugglers in the PoK and bringing it into Punjab. Previously, he has delivered consignments of the contraband in Amritsar, Ludhiana and other cities of Punjab.

Snehdeep Sharma, AIG, STF

First Published: Nov 28, 2018 09:20 IST