A 36-year-old man was apprehended by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) for allegedly smuggling 20 Siamese crocodiles and an Albino monkey. Officials laid a trap near Kalamboli area in Navi Mumbai and nabbed the accused.
The accused was identified as Ashfaq Hanif Wadia, a resident of Masjid Bunder in South Mumbai. “We were informed about smuggling in a private bus. The bus was about to reach Mumbai at around 11 pm on Saturday and accordingly we laid a trap along with forest officials and checked his baggage. We recovered 20 Siamese crocodiles and an Albino monkey following which he was taken into custody,” a DRI official said.
The official said the accused confessed and claimed to have smuggled the exotic species into the country from Bangkok. “He claimed to have placed an order for these species, which was then brought into India through Chennai airport by his accomplices. He then flew to Chennai and took possession of the smuggled species. We caught him while on his way to Mumbai,” added an official.
The officials said the accused played a crucial role in importing, while his accomplices need to be identified and arrested.