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Narcotic Affairs and Borders (NAB) Police Manipur on Thursday announced that they had arrested a wanted criminal and notorious drug lord of Manipur, who had been evading arrest for over two decades.
Md Masle alias Masleuddin alias Haji Basleuddin, 63, a resident of Lilong Turel Ahanbi, was reportedly arrested from his residence on May 30 in a joint operation launched by a team of NAB and Thoubal district police officers led by Thounaojam Brinda DSP of NAB. The combined team also reportedly recovered some cash from his possession.
Masle has been declared a proclaimed offender by the police department for his involvement in a number of cases including drugs and arms trafficking, organised crime etc and the first case against him was lodged in 1988 for assault with a deadly weapon.
He is one of the known drug kingpins of Manipur, who runs an international drug cartel spanning from Myanmar to India, Nepal, Bangladesh and other South East Asian countries.
“Several attempts to arrest Masle in the past turned futile as the security forces often met with stiff resistance from the drug lord’s gang of loyalists, who would often resort to using deadly force,” said SP NAB, W Basu.
“In the latest operation — that led to the arrest of the drug lord — many of the loyalists’ attacked the security forces, including DSP Brinda of NAB who was leading the operation,” he said.
While the police team managed to arrest the drug lord this time, his son Md Syed Ahmed alias Syrin, 27, who is also involved in many crimes, escaped.
“The drug lord not only ran drug cartels but is also responsible for many organised crimes such as cross-border arms trade, gold smuggling, vehicle thefts etc. If he is put behind bars, 50 per cent of drug menace in Manipur will subside”, asserted the SP NAB.
The arrested drug lord has been remanded to police custody till June 11 for further investigation. It is learnt that seven FIRs across different police stations have been lodged against him.
Moreover, the narcotic police are reportedly in touch with Delhi Police, Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) and other law enforcement agencies to dig up more connections to the international drug cartel.