Largest heroin haul in Sri Lanka seized in Colpetty

Largest heroin haul in Sri Lanka seized in Colpetty

Written by Staff Writer

24 Feb, 2019 | 9:09 pm

Colombo (News 1st): The largest heroin haul in Sri Lanka was seized in Colpetty last evening (Feb 23) in an operation launched by the Police Narcotics Bureau and the Police Special Task Force.

Based on a tip-off received from a reliable source, a special squad from the Police Narcotics Bureau and the Police Special Task Force raided the basement car park of a mall at 4 PM yesterday (Feb 23).

The most pivotal information was that there were two vehicles carrying heroin, parked in the complex and that two drug peddlers would be arriving to take the vehicles out. Several minutes after 4 PM, two suspects approached the vehicles confirming the tip-off. They were apprehended by the squad as they were approaching the vehicle.

Police noted that the two vehicles carrying 5 bags (272 parcels) each weighed up to 294.49 kg of heroin. The seized stock of heroin is worth over Rs 3.53bn.

The two suspects arrested along with the stock of heroin are residents of Panadura and Keselwatta. They have been identified as 43-year-old Mohammad Basir and 32-year-old Mohammad Ashmir.

The suspects were produced before the Fort Acting Magistrate Lochana Abeywickrama this afternoon. The Magistrate granted permission for the suspects to be interrogated under detention orders till the 1st of April.

Police Media Spokesperson SP Ruwan Gunasekara speaking to the media noted that their action will not stop with these raids. He added that a special investigation will be carried out after these raids, for example, the Criminal Investigation Department and the Police Narcotics Bureau will come together and launch an investigation to confiscate the properties of 24 drug peddlers generated through illegal means.

SP Gunasekara said drug smugglers should be subject to rigorous punishments. He noted that it will be a massive aid for the eradication of drugs.

The police media spokesperson revealed that the Police took into custody a total of 314kg of heroin in 2017 and that they were able to bust 737kg of heroin in 2018.

A significant increase took place in drugs busts during the final 2 months of 2018, after President Maithripalpal Sirisena took the Police under his wing. A total of 553kg out of 737kg busted in 2018, was taken into custody during this two month period.

This year, the Police has already taken into custody over 520kg of heroin and have made 6651 arrests.

Police Media Spokesperson highlighted the fact that the leader of this country is now strongly involved in the drug eradication in the country. He noted that these unique raids take place thanks to the combined efforts of all the forces. SP Gunasekara said they are now hoping to enact the death penalty on the convicts who have been declared guilty by both Magistrates and Court of Appeal.

Meanwhile, President Maithripala Sirisena arrived at the Police Narcotics Bureau this afternoon (Feb 24). President inspected the biggest single haul of heroin seized in Sri Lanka and congratulated the officers who were involved in the operation.

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