ANF nabs several ex-PIA, ASF officials in drug smuggling involvement
ISLAMABAD: In a recent development of seizure of drugs from within the Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) at Heathrow Airport, Interior Minister Chaudhry Nisar Ali Khan has claimed Friday that foreign drug mafia was behind the crime.
He has defended the national airline and ordered the Anti Narcotics Force (ANF) DG Major General Mussarat Nawaz Malik to broaden the circle of investigation. The two met in the capital city where the Interior Minister was briefed over the ongoing drugs smuggling case investigation.
He told Nisar that several suspects had already been arrested in the case. The Interior Minister told authorities to speed up the investigation process so that necessary action can be taken against the culprits.
While briefing the media in Rawalpindi on Friday regarding investigation into heroin recovery from different flight, Director General Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) Musarrat Nawaz said after one and a half months’ investigation, 14 suspects have been arrested most of them are ex-PIA employees and a couple of them are ex-ASF employees of various statures.
He also said in last two months, ANF has screened 750 international flights and conducted dozens of operations.
The DG ANF thanked the government institutions that helped them conduct their operations smoothly. “All the relevant government institutions helped us in our operations including Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) and PIA management,” he said.
While investigations were still in progress after the first incident to find out culprits involved, the incident at Heathrow Airport happened which tarnished image of National flag carrier. DG ANF Major General
Musarrat Nawaz Malik took serious notice and directed Field Staff as well as Intelligence setup to focus their efforts towards thorough scanning and sterilization of all major airports besides ensuring scanning of all foreign bound PIA flights.
During the course of action different airport departments/stakeholders were approached which included PIA, CAA, ASF and other airport service providers. More than 100 staff members of various organizations were interviewed or interrogated and thorough scanning of all available data was evaluated.
As a result of hectic efforts enough leads were found and simultaneous operations were conducted at Rawalpindi, Lahore & Karachi to get hold of the entire ring. Alhamdulillah, in last couple of days ANF made substantial progress and unearthed at least two major drug trafficking rings which were mostly Karachi based.
Akbar Alias Badshash was arrested in Karachi. He is an ex PIA baggage employee and a high ranking person in drug trafficking organization who has been arrested in morning at 0300 hours. He acted as chief coordinator and his responsibilities included recruitment of individuals at Karachi Airport, handing over drug packages and disbursement of facilitation charges/ commission to the team members.
PIA Cleaner Pervaiz Masih was recruited by Saleem Natiq. Further made his accomplice to PIA Driver Shahid. They both worked for notorious Drug Smuggler Shahida who got arrested in Nepal few years ago, while her rest of the group dissolved. In current setting Akbar alias Badshah Khan, instigated Pervaiz Masih for drug trafficking and made him a vital member of Drug Trafficking Organization. Pervaiz Masih then recruited other members in the network to transport drugs inside the airport and plant it in the planes.
Pervaiz Alam. He is a Traffic Supervisor in PIA Karachi. Pervaiz Masih introduced him with Akbar. Pervaiz Alam used to get drugs (Heroin) from Akbar and used to take the packets to a predetermined location inside the airport.
Shujat Hussain and Muhammad Saqib. They are shuttle operators in PIA. Their job was to pick the drug packages dropped by Pervaiz Alam and put the stuff in their lockers/ at safe place and on suitable occasion in coordination with Pervaiz Masih, any one of them with his team would take the drug packets in the plane.
Iqbal Masih, Maqbool Masih and Gopi Darshan. They are PIA employees working as sanitary workers. Any one of them alone or in collaboration with others under oversight of Shujaat / Saqib, they would place the packages in the designated space of the plane.
Imran Baig. He is employed as PIA Maintenance Staff (HTV Operator) on contract basis to wash the aircrafts. He revealed that he used to receive drugs from Saleem Natiq and Pervaiz Masih and transport these from outside to inside the airport.
Waseem Fareedi. He is an employee of PIA Engineering Staff. Another PIA Engineering Staff Syed Ghulam Yazdani (Senior Tech and Vice President Peoples Unity Karachi) used to supply drugs to him. He was also a carrier to move drugs from outside to inside the JIAP.
Syed Ghulam Yazdani. He is Senior Tech and Vice President Peoples Unity Karachi, who used to receive drugs from Akbar (introduced to him by Saleem Natiq) and keep them at his residence located in PIA Model Colony till an opportune moment.
Arrests made at Lahore: Saleem Natiq. He is also a PIA employee who was posted from Karachi to Lahore in Apr 2017 after the 1 st discovery of heroin on 3 Apr. He has been arrested from Lahore.
Arrests made at Rawalpindi. Saleem Khan. He is an ex employee from PIA lower staff, terminated after drug case. He would obtain essential info regarding schedule of aircrafts arriving and departing from JIAP from Syed Anwar Shah and pass it on to Akbar. He would also render expert opinion on weight and size of the packages according to the cavity where drugs were to be placed. He has been arrested at Rwp on a tip off after having disappeared from Karachi, 2 Kg Heroin recovered from him.
Syed Anwer Shah. He is serving in IT Dept of PIA and had access to complete info about schedule of aircrafts including their stay in maintenance hangers. He also established contact with Akbar occasionally. He has been arrested at Rwp on a tip off along with Saleem Khan, 1 Kg heroin was also recovered from him. NNI