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Gold worth Rs 21 lakh, opium recovered from drug dealer’s SBI locker in Mohali

The accused is currently lodged in an Ambala jail from where the STF brought her on production warrant and searched her locker.

punjab Updated: Feb 03, 2018 12:47 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Mohali
Gold loot,drug racket,State bank of India
Accused Sweety being taken away after the recovery of gold and opium from her locker at the State Bank of India branch in SA Jain College in Ambala on Friday. (HT Photo)

The Mohali unit of Special Task Force (STF) on Friday recovered gold worth Rs 21 lakh, 116gm opium, ₹1 lakh in cash and property documents from a drug dealer’s personal locker in a State Bank of India (SBI) branch in Ambala.

The accused, Sweety, 35, is currently lodged in an Ambala jail from where the STF brought her on production warrant and searched her locker.

Superintendent of police (SP) Rajender Sohal said they had arrested one Gurpreet Singh on December 6 after recovering some narcotic substances from his possession. During interrogation, he revealed he worked as a courier for Sweety and her husband Baldev Singh, who is lodged in Patiala jail.

“Since Sweety was lodged in the Ambala jail, we sought her custody on production warrant from a local court,” he added.

“We took permission to open her personal locker at the SBI branch at SA Jain College in Ambala. When we opened the locker in the presence of bank manager Tarsem Singh, we recovered over Rs 1 lakh in cash, 116gm opium and 707.47gm gold,” the SP said, adding that the cash seemed to be drug money, while the gold appeared to have been purchased using drug money.

Investigating officer sub-inspector Ram Darshan said Sweety supplied drugs in the tricity, Ambala and Punjab region. Most of her family members, including her husband, are facing trial in drug smuggling cases in Punjab and Chandigarh.

The police said using the drug money made over the past many years, Sweety had managed to buy several commercial properties in Ambala and adjoining areas. All the properties were plots, which were in the name of Sweety and her husband.

“The registration documents pertaining to 12 properties recovered from the locker are being verified,” Sohal said.

Modus operandi

Darshan said, “Baldev was lodged in Patiala jail after he was arrested with 3kg opium on December 23, 2016. Baldev met another drug supplier Manoj Kumar alias Mamu in the jail, and they became thick friends. The duo decided to operate their drug dealing business from behind bars, following which Baldev roped in his wife Sweety.”

“After receiving instructions from Baldev, Sweety would go to Delhi and buy drugs from Nigerians, who were in contact with Manoj. They would return to Chandigarh and hand over the drugs to Gurpreet to deliver the drugs and collect money from customers,” he said, adding that their drug trade was unearthed with the arrest of Gurpreet on December 6.

Sweety is facing trial in four Narcotics Drugs Psychotropic Substance (NDPS) Act cases in Ambala, and one each in Nabha and Mohali, Darshan said, adding that police stations across Punjab will be contacted to seek more information of cases against Sweety.

Manoj is booked in eight NDPS cases, and is currently lodged in Rupnagar jail, Darshan said.

First Published: Feb 03, 2018 12:46 IST