Indian man arrested for trying to ship 10.2kg of cocaine to Sydney

He was intercepted by Chandigarh Police, who suspect his involvement in an international drug racket.

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An Indian man was arrested last week after attempting to send over 10 kilograms of cocaine, valued at around Rs 100 crore, to Sydney through a courier company.

S Ashfaq Rehman had reportedly travelled from Chennai to Chandigarh two weeks ago and stayed in a hotel. On 13 May, he picked up a consignment from Chandigarh railway station and took it to a courier company. The drugs were hidden in the consignment of wooden trays and crockery.

36-year-old Rehman was arrested after the company employees performed a routine check of the parcel and alerted authorities due to his suspicious behaviour.

According to company employees, they had initially begun sanitising the packets as per COVID-safe procedure when they noticed the wooden trays were hollow. Upon further investigation, they scratched the surface and noticed a blackish powder inside. Although Rehman tried to escape, the employees gave him chase and held him down till the Chandigarh Police and Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) personnel arrived.

“The cocaine was packed in over a dozen small packets in different wooden trays. Accused Rehman claimed that he was getting Rs 1 lakh for sending one consignment to Australia. He reportedly confessed to having sent a consignment to Sydney from another Chandigarh-based courier company a few days back also,” Inspector Narinder Patial was quoted as saying in The Indian Express.

Rehman had tried to send the parcel under the identity of one ‘Amarjeet Singh’, which was found to be a stolen identity card from a Ludhiana resident. Rehman has since confessed to sending parcels to Australia from other courier companies under different names.

He was produced in court and will remain in policy custody for 10 days. He has also given Chandigarh Police the name of another Chennai resident involved.

The parcels were addressed to a ‘Tommy Shah’ in Sydney.

“We are verifying from the company as to how much the courier weighed and on which address it was sent. We will also check if the suspect had visited the courier office alone and the identity used to send the courier abroad,” a police officer stated.

The investigation into this drug racket remains underway.

Compiled from various news reports

READ ALSO: Indian national charged after seizure of 127 kgs of cannabis

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