The Thane police who recently seized close to 18,627 kg of ephedrine and also seized a firm in Solapur are further investigating the link of smuggling the drugs to South-East Europe. The police are also in search of the owners and promoters who have put forward the smugglers on field and are behind the crime.

Police officials with the seized consignment of psychotropic substances ephedrine and mephedrone 

After the arrested of the four accused, including the manager of a Solapur-based firm, the police, using some clues, are working on the smuggling link of the local Solapur network to South-East Europe.

“We have seized the firm and our crime branch officials are around Solapur looking after the owners and promoters of the firm, who are absconding. The senior manager of the firm was introduced by the manager at the place. After his arrest, we will get the details regarding local network and smuggling across India and other parts and also for past how many years it has been active silently," said Parambir Singh, Commissioner of Police Thane.

A senior crime branch official from Thane crime branch, who interrogated the accused, said, “Arresting a local Nigerian and getting links through it, we reached the big dealer and busted a kingpin of the smugglers. The arrest of the owner will reveal the facts and links of smuggling across South-East Europe that was revealed by one of the accused during interrogation. These countries have a high demand and the profit is good enough," added the official.

Ephedrine, a narcotic that is mixed with cocaine, and mephedrone, is a drug popular with young addicts.

The racket
The police were tipped off on April 12 about two youths smuggling drugs into Thane, and accordingly set up a trap near Ghanekatar Sabhagruh in Vartak Nagar, where the consignment was to arrive. Sagar Powale (28) and Mayur Sukhandare (25) were arrested and two kg of ephedrine, a banned drug, was seized from them.

During their interrogation, the youngsters revealed that a Solapur resident, Dhaneshwar Swami (28), had handed over the consignment to them. A police team immediately intercepted Swami, who said he had sourced the drugs from Evon Life Sciences' factory in Solapur, which is licensed to manufacture such drugs for medicinal use.

The Thane police, with the help of local Solapur police, raided Evon Life Sciences on Friday and found 18,627 kg of ephedrine, worth around Rs 2,000 crore. Senior production manager of the company Rajendra Dimri (48) has been booked since drugs were found that were unaccounted for which, cops suspect, had been supplied outside to be mixed with narcotic substances.