x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 July 2017

UAE anti-narcotics squad busts drug trafficking gang

An Emirati drug trafficking gang has been busted in a sting operation called Desert Fox by the UAE anti-narcotics squad.

DUBAI // The anti-narcotics squad has arrested an Emirati drug trafficking gang in a joint sting operation.

Operation Desert Fox involved the coordination of forces in Dubai, Sharjah and Abu Dhabi, Maj Gen Abdul Jalil Mahdi, director of the Anti-Narcotics Department of the Dubai Police, told the state news agency, Wam.

Three Emirati traffickers were arrested after the police smashed what Maj Mahdi described as an “international sleeping ring of traffickers within the local community”.

The police acted on a tip-off last September that one member of the Emirati gang would be delivering drugs to an unidentified person in Dubai’s Faqaa area. The ringleader was apprehended during the delivery. His confession also led police to the second gang member, in Sharjah, who was found in possession of a loaded gun.

The second member confessed to police that he had handed 25kg of hashish to the gangleader. A third man was arrested in a coordinated plan that involved Abu Dhabi police searching his car. Police uncovered a kilogram of hashish that the man had purchased from the gangleader as a sample, Wam reported.

The three face charges ranging from possession, peddling drugs and alleged consumption of drugs, Maj Mahdi said.

The operation was named Desert Fox after it was discovered that the ringleader, H?S?H, in his 50s, had concealed the hashish in the desert. H?S?H used the Faqaa area as the centre of his drug smuggling. He had previously been arrested in Saudi Arabia in 1997 and sentenced to 20 years for drug trafficking.

rtalwar@thenational.ae