Mumbai: Acting on a tip-off, the narcotics control bureau (NCB) arrested Bolivian national Melgar De Claudia (38), who flew in by Ethiopian Airlines with 3.25 kg cocaine worth Rs 21 crore on her person. The woman had hidden the drug consignment in the lining of her trolley bag and had come with the intent of selling it in the Indian drugs market. This is the second instance since May when a woman was caught peddling drugs worth Rs 17 crore at the airport.
Sources said that the arrested accused arrived at terminal 2 of Mumbai’s Chhatrapati Shivaji international airport from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. A Bolivian national, she was intercepted at T2 and upon checking her luggage, NCB officials found cocaine neatly concealed in the lining of her trolley bag. She was immediately arrested.
Kumar Sanjay Jha, zonal director, NCB, told The Asian Age, “We have arrested a Bolivian woman with cocaine weighing 3.25 kg that is worth Rs 21 crore in the trolley for her luggage. We are still investigating the matter and cannot comment anything further.”
During primary investigation, the accused confessed to transporting the drug consignment from Sao Paulo in Brazil to Addis Ababa in Ethiopia from where she finally flew into Mumbai. NCB officials are questioning her to ascertain the origins of the consignment and trying to know if she is associated with any drug cartel in south America.
An official who did not wish to be named said, “Mostly women are used to peddle drugs as drug cartels think that women will not be suspected for such a crime.”
Meanwhile, Thane’s crime branch unit 5 arrested a Nigerian national for selling cocaine worth Rs 1.60 lakh. The police officials received a tip off about the sale of drugs and laid a trap to arrest him. On the intervening night of Thursday and Friday, the police arrested 38-year- Okoye Emanuel, a resident of Diva. The police seized cocaine weighing 40 grams and booked him under relevant sections of the NDPS Act.