Agency seizes 4.6 kg of ephedrine in Andheri sewn in between layers of cotton inside mattresses
The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) has found a new Mumbai-Australia/New Zealand route that has become popular among drug networks to smuggle drugs like ephedrine by sewing it in mattresses between layers of cotton. NCB officials said five separate seizures have been made in the past few months in which narcotics were being smuggled to these countries in a similar manner, with the latest seizure taking place in Andheri on Thursday. It was sourced from Hyderabad and was destined to Australia via Mumbai airport.
An NCB official said that based on reliable information, a team of NCB Mumbai effected a seizure of 4.6 kg of ephedrine at Andheri in Mumbai from luggage headed to Australia. The contraband was concealed inside three mattresses packed in one carton in the form of a parcel. During the search, all the mattresses and the contraband hidden inside were taken out. Further investigation is underway to nab the consignee and consignor and unearth other links of the drug smugglers in Mumbai.
Ephedrine has a chemical structure similar to amphetamines, and is a methamphetamine analogue. Because of ephedrine’s structural similarity, it can be used to create methamphetamine. This has turned it into a highly sought-after chemical precursor in the illicit manufacture of methamphetamine.
Ephedrine is covered under section 9A of NDPS Act, 1985 (prohibition of production, supply, distribution of narcotic drug or psychotropic substance) and table-I precursor under the United Nations Convention Against Illicit Traffic in Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances.
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