Karachi: 2 customs men held after heroin seizure
KARACHI, Aug 22: Two officials of the Pakistan Customs were arrested for allegedly facilitating the clearance of 73.5-kilogram heroin that had been seized on Sunday, officials said on Monday.
They said that a case was also registered against the suspects under the Control of Narcotics Substances Act, 1997. A third Customs official allegedly involved in the case was absconding and efforts were being made to arrest him.
The Customs’ drug enforcement cell had recovered the heroin concealed in herbal medicines on Sunday.
Speaking at a press conference, Chief Collector (south) Rabia Sultana said that information was received that an attempt would be made to smuggle heroin powder out of Pakistan under the garb of medicines in commercial quantity.
During the course of surveillance, a customs team intercepted a Pakistani passenger, Ghulam Mustafa, on Sunday with his four suitcases when he entered the customs departure hall to take Qatar Airways flight (QR-319) for Dhaka via Doha, she said.
Initial scanning of his baggage indicated the presence of medicine boxes inside all the four suitcases and upon examination, a huge quantity of heroin was found in herbal medicines packets.
She highlighted another aspect of the case that the passenger had not only taken a deceptive route to Dhaka via Doha despite availability of daily direct fights to Dhaka from Karachi to hoodwink the customs staff.
She said that the passenger entered the departure hall at sehri time when a number of the law-enforcement officers were busy in taking Sehri. Moreover, scrutiny of the passenger’s travel documents revealed that he was in fact a Bengali holding the aliens registration card as well as a computerized national identity card that stood expired in 2009.
In recent years, this was the biggest haul of heroin recovered from the accompanied baggage of an outgoing passenger at the Jinnah International Airport.