India,Chennai: Like a scene straight out of potboiler Surya-starrer Ayan, sleuths of Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) seized more than one kg of cocaine, worth over Rs 5 crore, from a South African woman, who had swallowed capsules containing the contraband, when she arrived at the airport here.

According to a release, the arrested was identified as Princess Ntombifuthi Msomi (47), who landed in the city on Friday from Sao Paulo in Brazil via Abu Dhabi.

The arrest comes in the wake of her interception made by NCB sleuths, who acted on a specific tip-off. The arrest led to seizure of 1.075 kg cocaine from her possession.

The seized cocaine was concealed in “82 capsules” which the woman had swallowed, and was removed using medical procedure. Terming the modus operandi to be followed by “experts” who could swallow “around 200 capsules”, which they could keep concealed in the stomach for up to 48 hours.

The seized contraband was worth around Rs 5 crore in the local illegal market. The quality of the contraband is in its purest form. The cocaine is suspected to have been sourced from the cocaine production belt in South America.

She came on a tourist visa and was planning to leave the country after delivering the consignment of cocaine, sleuths said. The woman was believed to be working at the behest of the South American cocaine cartel and a probe was on to unearth her links in Chennai.

A mid-2015 analysis by NCB based on its seizure and arrests had established that the city has nearly a 100 active cocaine users. The city witnessed its first seizure of cocaine in 2008 (15 grams) while this ‘coke’ could have been doing its rounds even before that, since it was used only in close-knit consuming circles.

Numbers were crunched by poring over the clientele of two “coke” peddlers from the city, arrested earlier by NCB. Both of them were arrested in 2015 and they had around 15 buyers, who purchased between 10 and 20 grams every time for their parties, in regular intervals.

Staff ReporterCRIME
India,Chennai: Like a scene straight out of potboiler Surya-starrer Ayan, sleuths of Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) seized more than one kg of cocaine, worth over Rs 5 crore, from a South African woman, who had swallowed capsules containing the contraband, when she arrived at the airport here. According to a...