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Drug racket busted

8 December 2009

Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI: Two Afghan nationals and their Indian accomplice, who were allegedly part of an international drug trafficking racket, have been arrested by the Crime Branch of the Delhi police at Indira Gandhi International Airport here. The police claim to have seized 15 kg of heroin from them.

The Inter-State Cell of the Crime Branch on Thursday received a tip-off that two Afghan nationals purportedly smuggling heroin would come to India on board Ariana Afghan Airlines and hand over a consignment to a person at IGI Airport. Three teams were formed to keep a close watch on the movement of the suspects.

A team trailed the alleged receiver, later identified as Raju Dawar, who reached the international airport in a white car before the arrival of the flight in which the Afghan nationals were coming.

Around 7-30 p.m., Raju went to the exit gate and after a while returned with a suitcase, accompanied by an Afghan national. They were intercepted and the suitcase checked. The police purportedly found 7.1 kg high-quality heroin concealed in a cavity, following which the two were arrested under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act. The Afghan national was identified as Mohammad Masoom, from whom the police purportedly seized half kg of heroin kept in a polythene packet.

Police Commissioner Y. S. Dadwal said the accused disclosed that the second Afghan national named Mohammad had left for Hotel Kabuli in Jangpura. Another team arrested the accused in the hotel room and purportedly seized 7.4 kg of heroin concealed in a similar fashion in another suitcase.

During interrogation, the accused revealed that they worked for a drug trafficking network being run by Kabul-based smuggler Dawood, who had previously lived in Lajpat Nagar here as a refugee. The police said Dawood’s son Zahir is presently lodged in an Amritsar jail.

The police have obtained four-day custody of the accused to identify the others involved in the racket. They are also trying to ascertain the destination point of the consignment that was worth about Rs.15 crore in the international market. The passports of both the Afghan nationals, residents of Kandhar, have been seized. Preliminary investigations have indicated that they had earlier visited India.

(The Hindu, 28 November 2009)

200 quintals of explosives seized

7 December 2009

Sasarm: Nearly 200 quintals of explosives were seized from Bansa village in Rohtas district of Bihar on Monday as a special drive continued in the state to recover explosives and illegal weapons during the past one month, official sources said.

Acting on a tip-off, police raided two houses belonging to Harikishun Sharma and Ramswarth Mahato and seized ammonium nitrate (explosive) concealed in around 400 gunny sacks on Monday morning, sources said.

(The Hindu, 24 November 2009)

863 kg. ganja seized

7 December 2009

Special Corrrespondent

VISAKHAPATNAM: The Excise and Prohibition Department officers and staff arrested eight persons near Paderu and seized 863 kg of ganja worth Rs. 32 lakh while it was being transported from Visakha Agency area on Monday. Four vehicles used for transport were also seized.

On Sunday, the Excise Department conducted raids in four interior villages in Pedabayalu mandal and destroyed 1.50 lakh ganja plants being raised over an extent of 20 acres. The plants are estimated to be worth Rs. 2 crore. Eight persons from Kerala, who were encouraging the local Girijans to raise ganja, were arrested. A vehicle was also seized from them. One of the arrested Shanmugam married a Girijan woman and was raising ganja.

(The Hindu, 24 November 2009)

Fake currency worth 30 lakh seized

3 December 2009

Author: Raktima Bose

KOLKATA: Three Bangladeshi citizens, suspected of having links with Pakistan-based terror outfits, were arrested by the Special Task Force (STF) of the Kolkata Police here on Tuesday. Fake Indian currency notes with a face value of Rs. 30 lakh was seized from their possession along with several incriminating documents.

According to Rajeev Kumar, STF Joint Commissioner, the three persons — Abdullahil Baki, Abdur Rahaman and Mohammad Tahidur — had infiltrated through the porous Indo-Bangladesh border in the State’s Murshidabad district on Monday.

“Acting on a tip-off, we arrested them as they arrived in the city today [Tuesday] afternoon. Several maps, fake driving licences and voter identification cards were seized from them,” Mr. Kumar told journalists.

During primary investigation, the arrested reportedly confessed to links with the Pakistan-based Shahid Bilal’s group that is notorious for recruiting and training youths from Bangladesh for carrying out terrorist activities for outfits like the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and the Harkat-ul-Jihad-al-Islami (HuJI).

The police said that Mr. Baki admitted to receiving military training at a camp in Pakistan.

“We had intelligence inputs from the Centre about militants attempting to infiltrate through the Bangladesh border before the Lok Sabha elections. We had been tracking the movement of the group since April,” Mr. Kumar said.

(The Hindu, 18 November 2009)

Currency racket smashed; 4 held

3 December 2009

Staff Reporter

NEW DELHI: Four men allegedly circulating counterfeit currency notes have been arrested by the Crime Branch of the Delhi police. Over Rs.10 lakh in fake notes smuggled in through the Indo-Bangladesh border were purportedly seized from them.

The police received information that fake currency was being smuggled into the Capital via West Bengal. Investigations led them to one Waseem, who had allegedly been dealing in counterfeit currency.

Subsequently a Crime Branch team under the supervision of ACP Rajender Bakshi mounted surveillance on Waseem and his accomplices. Acting on a tip-off that they would come near Kamal Cinema in Safdarjung Enclave looking for a client on Sunday, the police sent a decoy to strike a deal.

Additional Commissioner of Police (Crime Branch) Neeraj Thakur said soon after the deal was struck, the police arrested the four accused and seized the “high quality” fake notes in Rs.500 and Rs.1,000 denominations. They were identified as Waseem, Mazibur Rehman, Rohit Yadav and Vipin Khari.

During interrogation, Waseem purportedly disclosed that he was from Bihar and headed the gang. Mazibur allegedly has an organised network of fake currency peddlers in his hometown Malda in West Bengal. Rohit and Vipin, both from U.P., had joined the gang recently and their job was to transport the consignments from the Indo-Bangladesh border to Delhi, the police said.

According to the police, Mazibur had come to Delhi for the first time to expand his network and find more clients. Waseem purportedly disclosed that he was earlier arrested twice on similar charges.

( The Hindu, 18 November 2009)

‘Refugees trigger fears of human trafficking’

17 November 2009

Special Correspondent

CHENNAI: The influx into India of unaccompanied minors from Somalia and Myanmar is raising human trafficking concerns, the Montserrat Feixas Vihe, Chief of Mission, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), New Delhi, said on Thursday.

In her key-note address at a discussion on “Refugee Protection in South Asia” hosted by the Centre for Asia Studies and the Tamil Nadu Dr. Ambedkar Law University, Ms. Vihe said large-scale refugee movements in recent times have been a trigger for fears over the possible abuse of minors by traffickers.

The UNHCR chief said one of the mandates of the organisation was to address the requirements of those with specific needs, such as unaccompanied minors, women and girls and to facilitate repatriation of refugees whose protection needs could not be met in India.

One lakh Tibetans

India was sheltering an estimated one lakh refugees from Tibet, 70,000 refugees from Sri Lanka, 8,000 from Afghanistan, 3,000 from Myanmar and over 600 refugees from Somalia.

Predicting an increase in refugee movements, given the endemic nature of ethnic conflicts and the porous nature of the international borders of South Asian countries, Ms. Vihe sought a more active engagement of the Government of India in dealing with refugee influx.

“At present, the Government is supporting our efforts. Ideally, there should be a role reversal on the refugee management front,” she said.

Ms.Vihe pointed out that in the absence of a National Refugee Law in India –as was the case across South Asia –refugee protection and rehabilitation work was operating in a “legal vacuum.”

On the refugee situation in Sri Lanka, where the UNHCR was engaged in one of its biggest resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons, Ms.Vihe said some of the complex challenges the agency faced pertained to the rapid rate of displacement, limited access to refugee centres and overcrowding at relief camps.

(The Hindu, 3 July 2009)

Police to be equipped to tackle cyber crimes

17 November 2009

Staff Reporter

Thiruvananthapuram: Home Minister Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, on Wednesday, said the government will ensure that policemen tasked with law and order duties acquired basic cyber crime investigation skills at the earliest.

Inaugurating the new Cyber Police Station at the State Crime Records Bureau here, Mr. Balakrishnan said the number of cyber crimes reported in the State had increased from 584 in 2007 to 1,882 in 2008. In 2009 till June, 1,030 computer and internet related crimes were reported.

The crimes included online job rackets and financial frauds, sending threatening messages through text messages and e-mails, theft of mobile phones, blackmail, running sex rackets under the cover of escort services advertised on the Internet, counterfeiting of currency and documents, dissemination of pornography through the Internet and anonymously using the web to defame others.

“Cyber space knows no physical boundaries. A criminal abroad can use the internet to defraud people in India. Hence, an international law must be framed to prosecute cyber criminals, irrespective of their nationality and location,” he said.

Evidence Act

The Information Technology Act should be suitably amended to make it more contemporary. He said new laws will be framed to regulate Internet cafes better.

Law Minister M. Vijayakumar said the Indian Evidence Act should be amended to tackle cyber crime.

Director-General of Police Jacob Punnoose said the cyber police station will provide expertise to policemen investigating cyber crimes. It will have the authority to register and chargesheet cases. It will work in tandem with the High Tech Enquiry Cell of the Police Department. Cyber crimes requiring sustained investigation and high technical expertise will be transferred to the cyber police station.

Additional Director-General of Police, Intelligence, Siby Mathews said the police were finding it difficult to track persons posting objectionable material on Internet facilities such as the “You Tube.” Mostly, the offenders anonymously posted such material on the web from foreign Internet Protocol addresses. With the use of computers and mobile phones becoming common, investigators should compulsorily seek the help of cyber forensic experts while collecting evidence and examining crime scenes. He said he knew at least a few cases where offenders escaped unscathed because investigators lacked a cyber forensic perspective.

Director-General of Police, Vigilance, K.P. Somarajan, Additional Director-General of Police, Crime Branch, Desmond Netto, Inspector-Generals of Police Tomin Tachankery, Sreerekha, B. Sandhya, Deputy Inspector-Generals of Police T. K. Vinod Kumar, Anil Kanth and City Police Commissioner M.R. Ajith Kumar were present.

(The Hindu, 2 July 2008)

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