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Mumbai: 25-year-old man arrested for allegedly selling whale vomit

Updated on: 21 July,2022 10:36 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Faizan Khan | faizan.khan@mid-day.com

The ambergris, recovered from the accused, weighs around 2.316 kg and is worth Rs 2.60 crore in the international market

Mumbai: 25-year-old man arrested for allegedly selling whale vomit

Representative Pic


A 25-year-old man was arrested by the property cell of Mumbai Crime Branch for allegedly selling whale vomit, also known as ambergris, which is banned under wildlife protection act. The accused, identified as Vaibhav Kalekar, was arrested near Trident Hotel at Marine Drive while he was waiting for an agent to sell the same.


The ambergris, recovered from the accused, weighs around 2.316 kg and is worth Rs 2.60 crore in the international market. The accused was nabbed based on a tip-off. "We have laid a trap and the accused was apprehended. The ambergris found in his custody was checked by forest officials with their kit and result came positive,” an officer said.



The property cell led by senior PI Shashikant Pawar and his team comprising PI Satyajeet Taitwale and Sameer Shaikh along with their team nabbed the accused at Marine Drive and later handed over him to Marine Drive police station for further interrogation. "The agent who was supposed to purchase is absconding. We are working on it to ascertain the chain of business people who have buying it through middle man illegally," officer added.


Kalekar was produced before Killa court and was represented by advocate Ajay Dubey, who argued that the custody is not required since the recovery has already being made. However, the court has granted three days custody to Marine Drive police station to understand the entire chain and apprehend other accused involved in smuggling of ambergris. 

In last one year, more than a dozen such cases have been reported across Mumbai. 

What is ambergris?

Ambergris is extremely valuable and rare. It is primarily used in the production of perfumes and musk products due to its unique smell. It has also been used in medicine and some also use it as food. 

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