Mumbai: ED Files Chargesheet Against Ali Asghar Shirazi, Others In Drugs Case

Mumbai: ED Files Chargesheet Against Ali Asghar Shirazi, Others In Drugs Case

The ED claimed to have found that Shirazi and his associates were running several logistics companies, call centres, websites, consultancy firms, and dummy pharmaceutical companies.

Ashish SinghUpdated: Sunday, March 03, 2024, 10:25 PM IST
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Enforcement Directorate | File

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has filed a Prosecution Complaint (PC) under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002, against alleged drug lord Ali Asghar Shirazi in a case involving export of narcotics from India using dummy companies.

Alongside Shirazi, the chargesheet names Kailash Rajput, Danish Mulla, Bhavesh Patel, Vijay Rane, Mehreen Shirazi and others, as well as entities such as Hustlers Hospitality and Falisha Venture. The special PMLA court will take cognisance of the complaint on Monday.

According to the PC, the ED has attached several witness statements, including those of actor Shiv Thakare and Big Boss contestant Abdul Rozik, in the case.

Recently, the ED attached immovable and movable properties worth Rs 5.37 crore in the form of flats, shops and land belonging to Shirazi, his wife Mehreen, Abdul Samad, Manoj Patel, and Bhavesh Shah. Additionally, movable properties worth Rs36.81 lakh, including fixed deposits (FDs) and bank account balances of Ram Lakhan Patel, Shobha Patel and Hustlers Hospitality were attached.

The ED had initiated an investigation on the basis of an FIR registered under various sections of the NDPS Act, 1985, and Drugs and Cosmetics Act, 1940, against Shirazi and others.

The ED claimed to have found that Shirazi and his associates were running several logistics companies, call centres, websites, consultancy firms, and dummy pharmaceutical companies. These companies were involved in shipping opioids from India to foreign countries and routing the proceeds from the sale to India using various channels. The PC says that these companies have been used as channels for narcotic trafficking and money laundering.

The ED investigation revealed that Shirazi formed nine logistics companies for narcotics trafficking and money laundering. He sent narcotic substances through these logistics companies to the US and UK, where Rajput and his associates received the consignments and distributed them across Europe. Funds for the shipments were received in India through various consultancy firms and individuals. The ED found that Shirazi’s firm, One Logistics, was involved in financial transactions with Hosea Worldwide Express and Ezhil Cezhian. Both companies had been convicted of transnational drug conspiracy, importing misbranded prescription drugs, including Tramadol (known as ISIS fighter drugs), and synthetic opioids, into the United States from India.

The evidence gathered from the forensic analysis of Mehreeni’s mobile phone revealed that even after Shirazi’s arrest by the Anti-Extortion Cell, he was operating his drug business from jail. Evidence showed that he directed Mehreen and accountant Siddhi Ganesh Jamdar to traffic various banned medicines using his syndicate. Despite his arrest, Mehreen and Jamdar continued his drug business, even receiving Rs1e crore from an angadia for supplying drugs.

The ED seized Mehreen’s phone during the search operation and found suspicious chats, including shared images of Rs10 and Rs20 notes with an unknown number ‘977***’. There were also voice notes regarding cash supply. In one chat, the person mentioned ‘7 peti’, to which Mehreen replied in her statement that she did not know the person using the number but was instructed by her husband to take money from him. When asked about the total funds received from this person, Mehreen stated that she did not remember the exact amount but it was around Rs25-30 lakh. She claimed that these amounts were used for her husband's bail in 2021.

The PC says that during the investigation, it was revealed that Shirazi became an additional director of Hustlers Hospitality through substantial narco-funding. The investigation also uncovered that Krunal Ojha, in connivance with Shirazi, used Hustlers Hospitality to launder narco proceeds for starting a cloud kitchen business. Additionally, Ojha was found to be in receipt of a significant amount of unaccounted cash from Shirazi.

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