An auto rickshaw driver and a posh restaurant owner are among six people nabbed late on Saturday by the Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) in a swoop on the drugs mafia amid the drugs angle probe in the death of Bollywood actor Sushant Singh Rajput, an official said on Sunday.
The six drug peddlers arrested were identified as Karanjeet Singh Anand, Dwayne Fernandes, Sanket Patel, Ankush Anreja, Sandeep Gupta and Aftab Fateh Ansari, NCB Deputy Director KPS Malhotra said.
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Arrested by NCB Mumbai Zonal Unit team led by Sameer Wankhede from Mumbai and Goa, they will be produced before a magistrate in Mumbai on Monday via video conferencing, said Malhotra.
Rajput was found dead in his Bandra home flat on June 14 — triggering a huge political row, an upheaval in Bollywood and simultaneous investigations by the NCB, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and even the Enforcement Directorate (ED).
Among those nabbed on Sunday are some peddlers who supplied drugs to the late actor through his girlfriend Rhea Chakraborty’s brother Showik Chakraborty and others.
Anand, 23, is described as a Mumbai-based narcotics supplier having a local distribution channel of drugs in Bollywood circles, and the NCB sleuths recovered unspecified quantities of hash and marijuana from him.
Fernandes — an associate of Showik — is a city-based drug dealer who used to supply the drugs meant for Rajput.
He was nabbed from Dadar west area along with other peddlers and the NCB recovered half a kilo of marijuana from them.
Gupta is an auto rickshaw driver by profession but his main business was to ferry bulk quantities of weed to retail peddlers like Fernandes in the current case.
Patel, part of the drugs distribution chain of Anand, used to deliver the narcotics to various celebrities as the NCB prepares to peek deep into the alleged Bollywood-drugs nexus.
Nabbed from the upmarket Powai area, Anreja, 29 runs a food kitchen in a posh area of Mumbai and also sold narcotics like weed, hash and MD to high profile clients.
He used to buy his supplies from Anand and Patel and was also connected with Anand and Anuj Keshwani — who had been arrested earlier in the same case. The NCB recovered 42g of hash and cash amounting to Rs112,400 from him.
The last of the lot, Ansari is operating a wholesale procurement channel of weed for Gupta who distributed it further through others in the network.
Besides, the NCB, Goa Sub Zone, has apprehended Chris Costa in the same case and further investigation is underway, said Malhotra.
The NCB has also denied speculation in some sections of the media that several leading Bollywood personalities are on its radar or are being probed.