Huge Yaba haul in city
One of drug barons held; VoIP equipment also found
A huge quantity of Yaba tablets and foreign liquor on display at Rapid Action Battalion Headquarters in the capital yesterday. The elite force also arrested two in this connection. Photo: STAR
Rapid Action Battalion (Rab) suspects Amin Huda, arrested early yesterday at his Gulshan office with 130,000 Yaba tablets, is one of the top barons of the drug business in Bangladesh.
This is the largest ever Yaba haul in the country.
During a raid, the elite crime busters also arrested Huda's close aide Ahsanul Haque Hasan, 34. The Rab also seized over 5,000 Yaba's alternative drugs ice pills, ice pill preparing chemical, foreign liquor, phensidyle, over Tk 46 lakh and currencies of six other countries.
Illegal voice over internet protocol (VoIP) equipment estimated to be worth over Tk 5 crore was also seized from Manticor Technology Ltd office. Rab said Huda had long been running illegal businesses under cover of this office.
Huda is manufacturing Yaba tablets in Bangladesh since 1999-2000, said a source in Narcotics Control Department (NCD) asking not to be named. He learned the technology from an expert named Neogate, who visited Bangladesh from the New York in the US, he added.
The source also claimed Huda had a close link with Hawa Bhaban regarding other businesses.
Soon after his arrest, Huda told The Daily Star he has no illegal businesses. The Uganda-born claimed to be an Australian national, but could not show any documents to validate his claim.
The Rab has also recovered his Bangladeshi passport, which could not be verified immediately.
Rab officials said Huda is a nephew of controversial businessman Aziz Mohammad Bhai. The officials of Manticor Technology Ltd also corroborated the Rab statement.
Huda remained tight-lipped when The Daily Star asked him about his relationship with Bhai.
A team of Rab members arrived at Huda's office on Road No. 123 in Gulshan-1 just after midnight yesterday with Mushfiqur Rahman Tamal, one of the six youths recently held with Yaba.
During quizzing, Tamal had told the Task Force for Interrogation that his friend Amin Huda supplied them with Yaba.
As the Rab members wanted to search his office, Huda tried to resist them saying he is a foreigner. The elite force however stormed into the office and found out 132 bottles of phensidyle.
"Stains of ice pills on a five-taka note gave us confidence that we hit the right spot," said Major Saidul Alam who led the raid.
At that time, Huda who understands Bangla but speaks English said he has no illegal businesses but did not elaborate on the type of his trade. He was looking pale and said he occasionally took phensidyle when he was asked about it.
Around a dozen officials and employees at the office said Huda is managing director of the company that trades in electronics and power management. The company was supposed to submit a tender for a power plant in Ishwardi, they added.
Major Momtazur Rahman who took part in the raid said they interrogated the employees when nothing more was found on the first floor. One of them revealed that Yaba tablets were hidden in an apartment on the fourth floor.
The Rab members broke into the apartment and found the huge quantity of Yaba tablets, ice pills and other materials.
Unknown people during the raid called two officials leading the operation and threatened them with dire consequences if they advanced further, the Rab said.
Rab Director General Hasan Mahmood Khandkar has asked all including social leaders, guardians and teachers of different educational institutions to protect the young generation from the evil influence of Yaba.
He said it is not yet possible to manufacture Yaba inside the country and the drugs are being smuggled into Bangladesh through different routes.
The Rab also seized 818 SIM cards, one Viagra tablet, 139 bottles of foreign liquor, three pieces of IPS, one local area network switch, 12 quantum, 15 cellphones, a pair of handcuffs, six computer CPUs, $1,900, 100 Hong Kong dollars, three Saudi riyals, 450 euro, 2,500 Thai bahts, 125 Indian rupees, Tk 46,01,422, one laptop computer, 159 telluler, one gear switch, two channel boxes, three PC monitors, 2.5 litre Orthophosphoric acid, one bottle Dietheylethol and 10 tolahs of gold.
Meanwhile, the NCD arrested a Yaba dealer with two associates in Maghbazar yesterday afternoon with 280 Yaba tablets, 80 bottles of phensidyle, three mobile sets and Tk 4,150.
The arrestees are Mohammad Shahin and his associates Mohammad Bashar and Liton Debnath.
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