Express news service
KOCHI: This elusive drug cartel operating out of Bengaluru is becoming a major cause of concern for law enforcement agencies in Kerala, as nearly all seizures of mind-altering drugs, like MDMA and LSD made in Kerala between January 2020 and May 2021, provided evidence regarding the direct involvement of this cartel.
Officials admit that only small carriers land in the net during screening activities, while large sharks continue to evade the long arm of the law or at least remain out of the reach of agencies.
According to data available from agencies in Kerala, nearly one kg of MDMA was seized statewide between January 2020 and May 2021 and almost 80% of the MDMA seized during the period came from Bengaluru.
Senior officers in Kerala say that dismantling the activities of this cartel is not so easy, considering that the cartel has managed to establish a strong network in Karnataka. But with the increase in the number of cases over the past year, the excise service has decided to tackle this cartel in a major way to bring them to justice.
“On several occasions, we had tried to tear off the kingpins of the cartel in Bangalore. But it is not that easy. We have now decided to seize the government of Karnataka and launch a coordinated effort to track them down, ”Excise Commissioner S Aananthakrishnan said.
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) is also coordinating the activities of various relevant agencies to identify cartel activity and a recent NCB investigation revealed that the major drug unions in Western Europe directly direct drug trafficking through a network. distribution in Bangalore. , which involves several Malayalis. “Before, they were Nigerians. But now European gangs are controlling the supply chain by offering lucrative commissions to local retailers, ”said an NCB officer. In addition to MDMA, the cartel deals with the trafficking of LSD, which is in high demand in Kerala. Data shows that 5.45g of LSD blots were seized in the state in 2020.
“The foreclosure-induced economic crisis has offered the cartel a major opportunity to recruit more carriers and flood the market with low-cost MDMA and LSD. Many new recruits from Kerala choose to join the distribution network for the easy money it offers, ”the officer added.
COUPLE STOPPED WITH 22 GM OF MDMA
Kochi: A couple were arrested while carrying 22g of MDMA drugs on a train in Aluva on Saturday. The contraband was smuggled in order to sell it to young people. Sanoop, 24, and his wife Rizwana alias Rakhi R, 21, originally and now residing in Mattancherry, were arrested, police said. Acting on reports that the couple were traveling with drugs, they were apprehended during a check carried out on the Bangalore Kanyakumari Island Express. They confessed to bringing the drugs to sell to young people. The MDMA seized is worth around D1 lakh, police said, adding that Sanoop had been arrested in several drug trafficking cases registered at various police stations. A team led by the Narcotics Unit of Ernakulam DySP K Ashwakumar Rural Police and Inspector of Aluva East PS Rajesh Police Station made the arrest.