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Desire for foreign travel lands woman in smuggling net

The 26-year-old, who was recently convicted of smuggling cocaine, was introduced to the business by a Nigerian who offered to sponsor her trips abroad.

Published: 14th July 2019 10:32 AM  |   Last Updated: 14th July 2019 10:32 AM   |  A+A-

drugs, representational image

For representational purposes

Express News Service

HYDERABAD:  A 26-year-old Delhi woman, who was convicted recently on charges of smuggling cocaine worth Rs 10 crore from Dubai to India, was a carrier and acting at the behest of her Nigerian handlers in Delhi.

The woman who was caught at the RGI airport by officials from Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) in May 2016, had also smuggled four large boxes of cocaine laced chocolates on two previous occasions in March and April 2016 but managed to escape the official eye. Though she was convicted, officials have not been able to catch her handlers. 

The woman met a Nigerian national at Delhi in January 2016 and became friends with him. When she expressed her desire to travel to foreign countries, he offered to sponsor her trips. During her first trip to Cambodia in March 2016, he gave her a mobile phone and told her to bring back some chocolates to Delhi that his friend in Cambodia would give her. When she asked why he was sponsoring her trip just for bringing chocolates, he told her the chocolates contained contraband and the details cannot be revealed. He also warned of trouble if she revealed this to anybody else. 

In April 2016, she travelled to Dubai and brought back more chocolates. Though she landed in Delhi on two occasions, her handler changed her travel plan from Dubai to Delhi via Hyderabad, for her third journey. Her travel to Dubai was originally scheduled on May 13, but at the last minute, it was postponed by a day. However, she was not given any reasons for that.

After she was intercepted at RGI airport on May 17, 2016, officials found five books in her backpack. Though novels, they were heavier than usual and were damp on the outside. Though initially she voluntarily admitted on carrying the contraband, she denied the charges in the court. 

The court while delivering judgement said, “she simply denied” charges against her, she never stated anywhere in her examination under section 313 of CrPC that the “statement made by her to the DRI officials was not voluntary.” In addition, the Rangareddy District Court also took note of the statement of the travel agent, who booked her tickets on her Nigerian friend’s instructions, before delivering the judgement sentencing her to undergo rigorous imprisonment for 10 years. 



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