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The Rachakonda Police Special Operations Team busted a drug racket operating from Sileru of Andhra Pradesh and arrested five persons apart from seizing 1,820 kilos of marijuana, one truck and other material worth over Rs.3 crore at Abdullapurmet on Thursday. The gang was transporting the drug from Andhra Pradesh to Maharashtra via Hyderabad.

The arrested persons were Sanjay Balaki Kale (30) from Osmanabad in Maharashtra, Abhiman Kalyan Pawar (49) from Solapur in Maharashtra, Sanjay Chowgule (45) from Ahmed Nagar in Maharashtra, Bharat Kolappa Yewle (37) from Maharashtra and Sheik Rahidul (27), from Nadiya of West Bengal. One suspect, Sanjay Laxman Shinde (26) also of Maharashtra, was absconding.

According to the police, all the suspects were known to each other and were smuggling marijuana from Sileru to Maharashtra, with Shek Rahidul from West Bengal regularly driving vehicles loaded with marijuana. Sanjay Laxman Shinde monitored the business by talking to the sources and selling it to customers in Maharashtra.

“Last week, Shinde contacted his source in Sileru and ordered 2,000 kg of marijuana. Due to strict surveillance on drugs in Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, he engaged Sheik Rahidul for transportation from AP to Osmanabad offering a good commission,” Rachakonda Police Commissioner Mahesh Bhagwat said.

On Tuesday, Rahidul loaded his truck with the drugs concealed in black soil bags, about 182 packets of marijuana each weighing 10 kg. They had bought the stuff for Rs.8,000 per kg and planned to sell for Rs.15,000 per kg, Bhagwat said, adding that as per Shinde’s instructions, the other suspects had reached Hyderabad in a car and were waiting at the Panthangi toll plaza in Choutuppal.

On receiving information, the police intercepted the truck and nabbed the suspects.
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