Customs seizes methaqualone worth Rs 3.4 cr headed to Aus

The Courier Intelligence Unit of Air Customs has seized 6.8 kg methaqualone, a narcotic drug made popular by rock stars and Hollywood, meant to be smuggled to Australia, at the international airport on Sunday night. The seized drug is valued at Rs 3.4 crore.
Representative image
Representative image


The drug was meant for smuggled through courier under the guise of apparel accessories, said a statement from the office of the Commissionerate of Customs.

Based on information that a parcel containing narcotics was likely to be smuggled through courier, the Courier Intelligence Unit of Air Customs detained a parcel at a courier warehouse in the city. The consignor had declared it as containing ribbon rolls and other apparel accessories.

But on examination, the ribbon rolls were found to be unusually heavy. When it was cut open, officials found plastic pouches containing white crystalline powder concealed inside. In all, there were 57 pouches were found inside the rolls.

The white crystalline powder was tested with narcotics testing, said the statement, adding that it tested positive for methaqualone. In all, 6.815 kg of suspected methaqualone valued at Rs 3.4 crore was seized under the NDPS Act, 1985. The sample has been sent to laboratory for confirmatory test.

As the parcel consigned to Australia was booked by a city-based person, searches were carried out at the address submitted by the consignor at the time of booking. But the address was found to be fake.

Officials added that efforts were on to apprehend the consignor and to find the source of the seized drug. Methaqualone is a central nervous depressant that acts as a sedative and hypnotic. It takes 30 minutes to kick-in and the effects could last up to eight hours.

The drug was made famous in 1970s by famous rock band Rolling Stones and also in the Hollywood movie The Wolf of Wall Street. Further investigations are in progress, the release said.

Meanwhile, Narcotics Control Bureau, Chennai Zone, disposed of 691 kg drugs seized in 14 cases. The NCB sleuths destructed ganja (532.840 kg), ephedrine (76.875 kg), heroin (4.166 kg), pseudophedrine (74.580 kg), hashish (0.980 kg) and ketamine (1.525 Kg) at GJ Multiclave, Thenmelpakkam, in Kancheepuram as per a court order in the presence of Drug Disposal Committee.

Visit to explore our interactive epaper!

Download the DT Next app for more exciting features!

Click here for iOS

Click here for Android

Related Stories

No stories found.
DT next