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Customs Court extends remand of suspect booked in betel nuts smuggling case

Customs Court extends remand of suspect booked in betel nuts smuggling case

KARACHI: The Customs Court extended physical remand of suspect namely Waheed Ahmed son of Nisar Ahmed, owner of M/s Al-Waheed Impex Karachi and sent him back to customs lock-up, who was booked in a case of attempting to smuggle 180,400 kilogram non-duty paid betel nuts and other contraband goods.

On September 17, 2018, Investigation Officer Azhar Malik of Anti-Smuggling Organization produced the above mentioned suspect before the court and informed that investigations are under way and accused needs to be further investigated for the arrest of other culprits who are also involved in same crime, therefore, court may grant his further physical remand.

After the hearing, court sent him back to customs department and extended his physical remand. The court also directed investigation officer to produce him on next date of hearing along with progress report.

According to the prosecution, Customs Collectorate Preventive Karachi received a tip off to the effect that a huge quantity of betel nuts was being smuggled into the country in the garb of import of waste paper scrap in pressed bundles shipped from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia and after clearance from the MCC Port Qasim, Karachi, they would be shifted to different parts of the city, Karachi.

As per FIR, information source further confirmed that five containers out of total 13 containers cleared from Port Qasim, dated 6/9/2018 were dumped at the M/s Bhatti near Maripur Truck Adda, Karachi and where from the smuggled goods would be shifted to other places shortly.

Investigation officer said that on that information, customs officials visited the spotted area and observed that process of un-loading of betel nuts from containers was in progress. Therefore, customs officials completed formalities and seized 180,400 kilogram betel nuts, 166,100 kilogram paper scrap in pressed bundles and also two Suzuki pick-ups and 14 containers.

He further stated that Ahsan Ullah Bhatti, clearing agent, and Muhammad Irfan son of Muhammad Manzoor are absconders in this case and prosecution needs investigation from arrested suspect; therefore, the court may grant his physical remand for further investigation and arrest of absconding suspects.