Sri Lankan Authorities: Iranian and Pakistani Nationals Arrested For Smuggling Heroin Worth $12M

Sri Lankan authorities said they had arrested five Pakistanis and an Iranian national on charge of smuggling hundreds of kilograms of heroin worth $12 million off the country’s southern coast.

The Sri Lankan Navy seized a fishing vessel on the high seas about 900 nautical miles (1,600 km) south of Colombo carrying 250kg of heroin estimated to be worth $12 million, Arab News reported.

“The police say that the suspects are five Pakistanis and one Iranian, and we have handed them to the Police Narcotics Bureau,” the outlet quoted Capt. Indika De Silva, the navy’s spokesperson, as saying.

Though Sri Lankan authorities said the suspects were five Pakistanis and one Iranian, a senior official from the Pakistan High Commission in Colombo said their nationalities might have been mixed.

“Since they share the same border and speak Persian as a common language, the local authorities would have got mixed up with the nationalities,” the Pakistani official said on condition of anonymity.

He said that the arrested suspects were in fact five Iranians and one Pakistani national, however the Embassy of Iran in Sri Lanka said they have no knowledge about the operation. 

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