By Darshana Sanjeewa Balasuriya
The Sri Lanka Navy yesterday brought ashore a vessel without a flag state carrying narcotics to the value over Rs. 3 billion seized in high seas about 548 nautical miles (985km) off Sri Lankan shores, Navy sources said.
- This is a result of an operation carried out by Sri Lanka Navy based on information received from persons aboard the three vessels which were seized in high seas earlier this year
The Navy seized 281kg of heroin and 48kg of crystal methamphetamine which has a street value of Rs. 3,270 million along with seven suspects, believed to be Pakistani and Iranian nationals on board the vessel last week and brought to the Dikkowita harbour.
The Navy said during the first quarter of the year 2020, Navy’s Offshore Patrol Vessels (OPVs) have yielded successful results. They were able to seize foreign vessels carrying large consignments of contraband such as heroin, crystal methamphetamine (ice) and ketamine and apprehended a number of drug traffickers.
“This is a result of an operation carried out by Sri Lanka Navy based on information received from persons aboard the three vessels which were seized in high seas earlier this year, the Navy said.
The Sri Lanka Navy is playing a vital role to block the drug supply networks in high seas, by means of major ships in its arsenal, and it has turned out to be a priceless force in the national programme to eradicate drug menace from the island.
Including this stock, the Navy has seized 687kg of heroin, 795kg of crystal methamphetamine and 579kg of ketamine during naval operations in high seas this year alone.