Finally, S. African woman held for smuggling cocaine
The South African woman who had concealed cocaine capsules in her stomach, has finally been taken into custody, reports Manish Pachouly.mumbai Updated: Sep 20, 2009 01:15 IST
The South African woman who had concealed cocaine capsules in her stomach, has finally been taken into custody.
Nongwaza (Pumla) Caroline (34) was arrested a day after the Bombay High Court permitted her counsel to take her custody as she was not under arrest by the customs department.
Caroline was arrested on Saturday for smuggling 58 capsules containing 570 gm of cocaine worth Rs 57 lakh.
The authorities seized and weighed the contraband on Friday.
Additional Commissioner of Customs (AIU), B. S. Nunwal confirmed that Caroline had been arrested under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act.
The Air Intelligence Unit of the Mumbai Customs had intercepted Caroline on September 1.
She had arrived from Sao Paulo, Brazil via Dubai.
Preliminary reports had shown the presence of some capsule-like objects in her stomach.
Caroline was admitted to JJ Hospital at Byculla, after she refused to eat anything that would cause the capsules to be ejected naturally.
However, 51 hours later she passed 57 capsules in her stools.
The last capsule, however, had to be removed through surgery on Tuesday.
Officials of the Customs Department had detained Caroline after seeking special permission from the court.
A magistrate visited Caroline in hospital on Saturday and remanded her in judicial custody until September 22.
However, Caroline has refused to give a statement or sign the panchnama to the authorities who have wanting to know the source of the drugs and who the intended recipient of the consignment was.
A Customs official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not authorised to speak to the media, said that Caroline was not cooperating in order to avoid confessing to the crime.
“However, medical reports confirm that the capsules have been recovered from her body,” the official added.
Caroline will remain in hospital until she is declared fit by doctors.