KARACHI: Amir Muhammad Siddiq, an accused in a case of alleged smuggling of 1500 kilograms of heroin powder was admitted to bail by High Court of Sindh against a solvent surety of Rupees 1,000,000. Umer Farooq Advocated represented the applicant/accused.
According to details, the accused was booked in a F.I.R No I&P/2021 registered under sections 6,7,8 & 9 of the Control of Narcotics Act 1997 at Model Customs Collectorate (Enforcement & Compilations) Custom House Karachi. As per prosecution an information was received from National Crime Agency (NCA), UK through Deputy High Commissioner of UK art Karachi that on 28-1-2021, Dutch Customs targeted five suspected containers and later searched a Container No HLXU-3540637 from which 1500 Kilogram heroin was recovered. A number of Dutch and Turkish nationals were arrested but none of them travelled to Pakistan or found being in contact with criminal associate in Pakistan.
The custom traced the container and found that it was exported from Pakistan and destined to Antwerp, Belgium and as per declaration it contained “Rock Salt”. The consignment was exported consignor M/s SR Enterprises and M/s Sea Liner Karachi was clearing agent.
The applicant Amir Mohammad Siddiq and Naushad Ahmed were booked being owners of the said firms on charge of participation, abetting, aiding and facilitating the commission of said crime.
Umar Farooq advocate appearing for the applicant pleaded innocence. He also pointed out that a period of six days is between the arrival of container and seizure which create doubt about alleged sexuire, detection and actual place of recovery.
The applicant/accused only provided form E but he is neither the importer or exporter. His role is thus limited to action under Foreign Exchange Manual before the State Bank of Pakistan for securing remittance as surety being commission agent on undertaking basis.
This under taking is with reference to guarantee that if exporter fails to bring back the foreign exchange person providing Form E would be responsible.
He further argued that case property is not with the investigating agency and case is being processed on presumptions. He further contended that alleged container was thoroughly checked by ANF expers/officials at South Asia Pakistan Terminal (SAPT) at Karachi and also official seal of ANF was also affixed. The applicant has no knowledge about contraband as it never remained in his possession or even he has not handled it at any point of time.
The court also examined the details including the ports visited by the said ship before reaching Rotterdam, port of call where seizure was made while the port of destination was Antwerp, Belgium. The bench also noted that information regarding sampling and examination of heroin powder recovered was not available. It is doubtful that contra band was loaded into the consignment at Karachi, Pakistan.
The bench agreed to the argument of Umar Farooq Advocate, counsel for the applicant that it is case of further inquiry and since accused are in judicial custody for about a year they are entitled to concession of bail.
The bench then admitted the accused to bail against a solvent surety of rupees one Million.