Pune Mephedrone case transferred to Mumbai Narcotics Control Bureau

Police Commissioner Amitesh Kumar announced that police have completed their initial investigation and transferred all documents to the NCB
Representative Image
Representative ImageImage source: Sakal Media Group

Pune: The investigation into the mephedrone drug racket, which initially began at Sassoon Hospital, has now been handed over from the Pune Police to the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in Mumbai. The transfer follows significant discoveries, including the seizure of 1,826 kilograms of mephedrone from the Kurkumbh industrial area, based on information from the arrested suspects.

Police Commissioner Amitesh Kumar announced on Saturday (June 15) that the police have completed their initial investigation and transferred all relevant documents to the NCB. The total value of the seized mephedrone in the international market is estimated to be ₹3,674.35 crores.

The Pune Police had made several arrests in connection with the mephedrone trafficking operation. Gangster Vaibhav alias Pintya Mane, along with accomplices Ajay Karosiya and Haider Sheikh, were apprehended during a raid in Somwar Peth. A subsequent raid on Sheikh's warehouse in Vishrantwadi led to the seizure of mephedrone worth crores of rupees, along with raw materials.

Further investigation linked the seized drugs to Arthchem Company in Kurkumbh. This led to the arrest of the company's owner, Bhimaji Sable, chemical engineer Yuvraj Bhujbal, and Ayub Makandar. Additional suspects Sunil Burman, Ashok Mandal, Shoaib Sheikh, Pappu Qureshi, and Ali Sheikh were also detained. Raids conducted by Pune Police in Pune, Kurkumbh, Delhi, and Sangli identified Sam Brown and Sandeep Dhuniya as the masterminds behind the operation.

The case began when ₹2.14 crore worth of mephedrone was seized from the Sassoon Hospital area, revealing that Lalit Patil, a patient at the hospital, was involved in the drug trade. Patil subsequently had fled from the hospital.

Investigations uncovered that Dhuniya was smuggling mephedrone manufactured at Arthchem Company to international markets. Dhuniya is believed to have escaped to Dubai via Nepal. The police are actively searching for him, but his exact whereabouts remain unknown. Haider Sheikh was found to have supplied mephedrone to Pappu Qureshi for distribution in Pune, Maharashtra, and Delhi. Qureshi's connections with Dhuniya and Shoaib Sheikh were also established.

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