BY GIHAN KAMALESH WEERASINGHE
Police Headquarters has decided to expose a top drug dealer who was enjoying the protection of the upper echelons of the political elite. This news is a resounding slap in the face of such elite figures that benefitted from this kind of unscrupulous elements.
The drug dealer in question is Mohammed Mubarak Mohammed Mujahid, who gained a name in the world of the silver screen by pumping funds into films and getting fame as a film producer who now has the two movies, Selvam and Pravarthana to his credit.
He associated not only with the Sri Lankan leaders but also with the Royal Family of Malaysia as a citizen of that country. He was honoured in 2012 with the Malaysian title ‘Dato’ which is similar to the knighthood offered by Queen of England. ‘Datos’ have VIP status and they hold a special passport.
He has invested his wealth earned from drug trade in the businesses in Malaysia. Investigations have revealed that he has approached the political elite of that country lavishly spending the black money he dabbled in, on them.
A young MP of Colombo District took prominent leaders of the previous regime to have breakfast with a drug dealer in Kochchikade, who was later shot dead by an unknown gunman.
According to Police records, Mohammed Mujahid is the godfather of the drug trade between Pakistan and Sri Lanka. He was the boss of drug kingpins Wele Suda and Siddhik who are now in the custody of Sri Lanka Police. None of the drug dealers of Pakistan release a single gram of heroin to Sri Lanka without Mujahid’s permission.
Narcotics Bureau has not yet revealed when Mujahid entered the heroin trade. However, Police has revealed that Mohammed Siyam of Ward Place, who has been condemned for the possession of drugs is his brother-in-law. Siyam who was married to Mujahid’s elder sister was arrested with his wife in 2003 with 23 kilos of heroin and both of them were subjected to death penalty. An attempt to get both of these released under President’s pardon failed due to vigilance of media. Mohammed Mujahid was behind this.
Siyam too associated with the leaders of the government. His mansion on Ward Place had fast become notorious as a venue accommodating the visit of a Minister almost every day. He had ready access to the Presidential Palace too. His friends are Ministers and MPs even today. However, his chief political patron is on the losing side at present.
Mujahid replaced Siyam and handled the heroin trade based in India. He smuggled out 1,000 kilos of heroin into Sri Lanka hidden in seven containers between 2009 and 22nd July of 2014. However, the container of grease tins in which heroin was hidden and the former Prime Minister’s name was involved in the attempt to get it released is not among his smuggled stocks. He has smuggled heroin to the island in mass scale hidden among furniture, clothing, apple, machinery, plywood, rice and hitherto unknown ways.
The stocks smuggled by Mujahid to Sri Lanka annually are enough to feed the addicts’ for twenty years.
Investigations have revealed that the extra stocks are re-exported to many destinations hidden in the tea packets of a reputed Ceylon tea company.
US Narcotics Agency informed Sri Lanka about this racket on March 05, 2013 as mentioned by Police spokesman Ruwan Gunasekara. The agency launched an operation with the Police Narcotics Bureau to nab the racketeers.
The US agency placed a 200 kilo of heroin order for Australia by way of telephone. An agency mole was among the drug peddlers. He was a Turkey National. He visited Sri Lanka for the deal. Only a handful of officers including Senior Superintendent of Police Kamal Silva were aware of this mission. The informant stayed in a star-class hotel in Colombo. Mujahid sent a representative to the hotel to discuss the deal. He was Ahamed Sabrin Nabujideen, a cousin of Ward Place Siyam and Mujahid. He is a resident of Kandy who appeared as a businessman.
The police officers had identified his telephone numbers and they had stationed in the hotel disguised. They were monitoring the CCTV images also.
The informant left the country. Police Narcotics Bureau submitted a secret report to the Colombo Fort magistrate and investigated the account details of Nabujideen.
The owner of the 93 kilos of heroin nabbed on 22nd July of 2014 after smuggling to Sri Lanka hidden in grinding machines was Mohammed Mujahid. The heroin stock was intended to be re-exported as Ceylon Tea. Narcotics Bureau was aware in advance about it and waited until the stock was released by Customs so that they could arrest the cache of drugs with a group of operators. But the plan was bungled since the smuggled heroin was nabbed by Customs.
However, Narcotics Bureau arrested a racketeer who was to accept the heroin stock. He was Mohammed Hamza. Police questioned him for several days and arrested another stock of 53 kilos of heroin intended to be exported hidden in Ceylon Tea packets to Australia. It was the order placed via the Turkey agent.
The owner of the heroin stock was Ahamed Sabrin Nabujideen. Police Narcotics Bureau arrested him. He burnt his wife’s laptop to prevent exposing the secrets but Moratuwa University retained the vital information from the hard disc of the machine. Thus, sufficient evidence was recorded against Mujahid preventing his escape from the law.
Police Narcotics Bureau obtained an open warrant against Mujahid and a red notice is being sought from International Police (Interpol) against him. Mujahid presently lives in Malaysia and the international narcotics authorities are vigilant to prevent him from escaping to Pakistan or Dubai. He has become an international headache and the day he would be brought to the island is drawing closer.
The drug trade in the island will not stop merely because Mujahid is taken into custody. He is only one major link in this chain. Police Narcotics Bureau is trying to eliminate few more major nerves of this network with international assistance.