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Two Ugandans Arrested: Rs 15 Million Heroin Concealed Under Wigs

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Two Ugandan women were intercepted at Plaisance airport on Saturday December 30 and Sunday December 31 respectively last year with 1042 grams of heroin concealed under their wigs. The two women had arrived on flights KQ 274 and KQ 270 from Kenya. The street value of the drugs is estimated at Rs 15,650,500. The Anti-Drug and Smuggling Unit (Adsu) based at Plaisance airport is on the trail of another Kenyan national who it suspects may have left the airport with drugs.

A joint operation by elements of the Customs Anti Narcotics Section (Cans) of the Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA) and Adsu led to the seizure of the drugs. The first suspect was identified as Shakirah Uthman Muyomba, a 34-year-old quality controller, as she crossed the Green Channel. This was after profiling was carried out on her. The passenger was intercepted, questioned and her luggage searched. But no compromising items were found.

Shakirah Uthman Muyomba
Shakirah Uthman Muyomba

She was subsequently subjected to a search. During this exercise, her wig, which was stuck to her head, was removed. A circular parcel in a black and grey plastic bag containing a powder was discovered.

A field test carried out on this substance proved positive. The MRA’s Honey sniffer dog also reacted positively to the presence of the drug. The drug weighed 520 grams, with a street value of Rs 7,800,000.

Following this seizure, vigilance was exercised on other passengers arriving from this country. On Sunday December 31, another Ugandan woman, Jane Akurut, 31, who had arrived on flight KQ 270, was targeted. This woman, a procurement officer, had also used the same trick to bring drugs into Mauritius. Under her wig, a parcel containing 522 grams of heroin, with a street value of Rs 7,840,500, was removed.

Jane Akurut
Jane Akurut

The two women, who were visiting Mauritius for the first time, were staying at a boarding house in Montagne Longue.  They were handed over to Adsu police officers for questioning. A controlled delivery operation that had been in place since their arrival was cancelled on Monday January 1.

The two Ugandans will appear in court in Mahebourg on Wednesday morning, January 3. They are facing a provisional charge of drug importation.

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