Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has made this year's first seizure of Methaqualone aka Quaaludes from a 71-year-old South African national and his associate. The agency seized 14 kilograms of the drug from the arrested duo.
NCB had zeroed down upon the septuagenarian during his stay in a Delhi hotel and nabbed him at the airport when he was to fly out of India. The accused has smuggled drugs six times in the past.Earlier, the police had arrested another South African in Mumbai with the drug.
He told the police that he had stayed at a hotel in Karol Bagh. When NCB sleuths went to the hotel to verify his claims, they found that he had stayed there from March 16 to April 3. The police also
found that another South African national had been staying in the same hotel since March 29.This man, Jan Harm Herbst, was put on surveillance and soon the cops came to know that he was going to take a consignment of drugs to South Africa.
On April 10, Herbst and a Nigerian national named Martin were intercepted at the domestic airport. Herbst was to board a flight to Bengaluru.
When the sleuths searched his luggage, they found Methaqualone wrapped in polythene and carbon paper concealed between T-shirts.Herbst was to take an Etihad Airways flight from Bengaluru to Chennai from where he would have flown to Abu Dhabi and finally to Johannesburg,“ said NCB deputy director general Ravinder Pal Singh.
During interrogation, Herbst revealed that he had come to India eight times and ferried drugs in six of those trips.
He works for a Nigerian drug cartel operating between India and South Africa.Martin told the cops that he has been supplying the drug for several years.
He has been staying in India since 2007.He disclosed that he had supplied the drug to Victior, the South African arrested in Mumbai. His passport and visa have expired.
The customer base of Quaaludes is increasing in India. Last year, Delhi Police had busted a similar racket in which the drug was being sold to Delhi University north campus students.