NCB arrests 3 foreigners with cocaine



New Delhi: The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has claimed to have unearthed an international syndicate of drug trafficking with the arrest of three foreign nationals and seizure of cocaine worth Rs 15 crore from them.

This is the largest ever seizure of cocaine in the last five years in the country. The three-day long operation, undertaken with the help of the US drug enforcement agency, was conducted between Delhi and Mumbai and saw the NCB seize 29.08 kilograms of the contraband after tracking a "trans-national drug syndicate".

NCB Director General O P S Malik confirmed the development to a news agency and said a "probe was underway".

The three foreigners have been identified as Santander Tarazona Prado (49) of Bolivia, Juan Fernado Doncel Rivera (33) of Colombia and Kenya born British national Zahid Hussain Mir.

The three have been arrested under the stringent Prevention of Immoral Trafficking-Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act (PIT-NDPS) and are being currently interrogated by NCB sleuths.

NCB sources said the alleged syndicate run by these people used to source cocaine from South America and they reportedly supplied it to organised drug peddlers in the country which included use of drug couriers and agents.

"Places like Tirupati and other tourist locations in the south of the country were being serviced by this syndicate," sources said.

"While heroin and other drugs are seized in huge quantities, illegal cocaine is only caught in one or two kilograms. This is huge catch," they said.

The NCB headquarters in Delhi was constantly in close touch with the Drug Enforcement and Administration unit of the United States of America and the Mumbai NCB zonal unit tracked the three individuals over a period of three days, sources said.The NCB expects to make few more arrests in the case.

PTI