A 63-year-old Malaysian was arrested at the Tiruchi Airport on Sunday after Customs officials discovered nearly 11kg of ketamine stashed in his luggage.
Investigators suspect the Malaysian, a daily wage earner from Kuala Lumpur, was hired by a well-linked drug trafficking syndicate to smuggle the contraband from South India to Malaysia.
“We usually monitor closely passengers travelling to Malaysia because of the rise in drug trafficking.
“When our officers scanned his luggage we found several bags hidden inside which contained ketamine packed in polythene packets and covered with clothing,” D. Shivasankaran, Additional Commissioner of Customs, Tiruchi told reporters yesterday.
The suspect, a widower, arrived in Chennai late last month and was about to return to Malaysia from Tiruchi on a low cost carrier on Sunday morning, when the arrest took place.
Shivasankaran said the suspect refused to divulge any details about himself but told investigators he was in India as a tourist and that a stranger had asked him to send the bags to Kuala Lumpur.
“We believe it was planned in Malaysia and he was carefully chosen by the syndicate to do the job. He is merely a carrier,” added Shivasankaran.
The suspect is being remanded at the Tiruchi jail.