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Tamil producer with gang orchestrates Rs 2,000 crore drug empire; smuggled meth chemical to Australia, NZ

Dabbling in the illicit trade of methamphetamine, the producer's gang skillfully concealed large quantities of pseudoephedrine, a crucial ingredient in meth production, within innocuous shipments of desiccated coconut powder or health mixes.
Last Updated : 25 February 2024, 09:33 IST

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In a shocking twist within the glitzy realms of the Tamil film industry, a film producer, hungry for more than just cinematic success, orchestrated a drug empire that raked in a staggering Rs 2,000 crore in a mere three years.

Dabbling in the illicit trade of methamphetamine, the producer's gang skillfully concealed large quantities of pseudoephedrine, a crucial ingredient in meth production, within innocuous shipments of desiccated coconut powder or health mixes. The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) unraveled this operation after receiving intelligence from customs authorities in New Zealand and the police in Australia, reported NDTV.

Methamphetamine, colloquially known as meth or crystal meth, commands a high price in the global market, particularly in Australia and New Zealand, where it fetches nearly Rs 1.5 crore per kilogram. The revelation that these lucrative consignments were originating from Delhi prompted a swift response from a joint team comprising the Delhi police special cell and the NCB. Gyaneshwar Singh, Deputy Director General of the NCB, disclosed that four months of meticulous technical and field surveillance led the authorities to a godown in West Delhi's Basai Darapur.

At the godown, the illicit operation faced its first setback as authorities apprehended members of the drug syndicate attempting to smuggle pseudoephedrine by concealing it in a multigrain food mix. Three individuals were arrested, and 50 kilograms of the chemical were seized. Further investigations and sustained interrogations revealed the magnitude of their enterprise – a total of 45 consignments dispatched over three years, totaling a staggering 3,500 kilograms of pseudoephedrine, valued at over Rs 2,000 crore internationally.

The mastermind behind the drug nexus was identified as a Tamil film producer, who, currently on the run, is a prime target for arrest. The NCB is determined to apprehend him to unravel the roots of the pseudoephedrine supply chain.

Simultaneously, collaborative efforts with New Zealand and Australian authorities are under way to bring the recipients of these illegal shipments to justice.

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Published 25 February 2024, 09:33 IST

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