Delhi: Sandalwood smuggling racket busted, 1 held

New Delhi: Delhi police on Monday arrested a man in connection with sandalwood smuggling and seized 571.4 kg of redwood worth around Rs 50 lakh from him in Asola village here.
The accused has been identified as Amit Verma, a resident of West Bengal.

Based on inputs from sources, the STF team laid a trap in Asola Village on June 3 and arrested Verma.

“The godown in Asola was taken on rent by the accused. Eight logs were recovered from the godown. To identify the recovered logs, a wildlife inspector was called on the spot, who identified the recovered logs as red sanders,” Deputy Commissioner of Police Dr G Ram Gopal Naik said.

The cost of recovered illegal redwood is around Rs 2 crore in the international market.

Verma has disclosed that he along with his other associates was smuggling the illegal redwood from Karnataka with the help of a local smuggler.

The redwood was smuggled from Karnataka to the national capital in trucks concealed inside scraps of clothes. The smuggled goods used to be delivered to Delhi-based clients.

Two Nepal nationals are the main receivers of the sandalwood in Delhi and NCR who further smuggled them to China and other countries. Efforts are being made to trace them, Naik said.

A case under IPC sections of 141, 19, 379 and 411 and 2, 33, 42, 52 and 64 of Indian Forest Act has been registered against the accused.

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