x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 28 July 2017

Nine charged in heroin smuggling operation

Prosecutors say seven men and two women conspired to bring the drug to the UAE for sale.

DUBAI // A 60-year-old woman denied knowingly carrying 34 grams of heroin, a Dubai court heard this morning.

The woman, BB, told Judge Saeed Mohammed al Bargouth at the Dubai Criminal Court of First Instance that her son, who with six other men and a woman is also accused of drug possession, gave her the three capsules.

Two Pakistani men, AM, 46 and PA, 40, denied smuggling and possessing 118 heroin-filled capsules. They also denied consuming drugs.

Four other men, identified in records as SM, 30; MA, 30; AN, 22; and FA, 57, all from Pakistan, admitted to the same charges.

MA told the court that the heroin seized in his possession, about 1.5 kilograms, was for his own use, which caused a stir among the judges.

According to court records, the four men were smuggling the drugs for distribution.

The second female defendant, SF, 40, denied smuggling 37 heroin capsules and told the court that she had been arrested with her husband, FA.

A Dubai police corporal told prosecutors they had received a tip about a kilogram of heroin for sale for US$14,000 (Dh51,000). He said that an investigation team was set up and arrested the man behind the sale, who led them to the defendant SM, records show.

SM told police that a man called him from Pakistan and provided him with locations in which he met suppliers.

Police ordered SM to receive the calls, then lead them to the drug smugglers. All the defendants were arrested between March 3 and 9, 2010.

The next hearing was scheduled for April 5 to appoint defence lawyers.

salamir@thenational.ae