‘With the huge amount of money made from the illegal trade, these people have built houses like palaces’
Law authorities for the first time seized assets from top yaba smugglers in Teknaf upazila of Cox’s Bazar.
Police seized three duplex buildings and land worth over Tk30 crore, following a court order on Saturday.
The smugglers whose assets have been seized are Ejahar Mia, 70, and his two sons Nurul Hoque Bhutto, 32, and Nur Mohammad alias Mongri, 35.
Nurul Hoque Bhutto is at the top of the home ministry’s list of yaba dealers and his brother Nur Mohammad was killed in a reported gunfight with the police two months ago.
Teknaf Model police station OC, Pradip Kumar Das, supervised the raid in Nazirpara of Teknaf till 3pm, and confiscated the assets.
“I have no one. They threw us out of our houses,” said one of the residents evicted from the buildings. She said none of her relatives were involved in the yaba trade.
“The owners of these buildings used to be van and rickshaw pullers. Now they have assets worth millions,” said Teknaf Model police OC, Pradip Kumar Das.
He added that many labourers, salt farmers, rickshaw and van pullers of the upazila made millions dealing yaba but have fled after the crackdown on narcotics.
“Many of them have been killed in shootouts or are in police custody,” he said. He added that those involved in the trade will gradually face the same consequences.
The OC said: “On May 23, District and Sessions Judge Khandaker Hassan Md Feroze issued the order following a case filed by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of police.”
“From now on, all accounts of confiscated assets will be presented to the court on May 14 of every year.”
A police official at the raid, OC MS Doha, said: “With the huge amount of money made from the illegal trade, these people have built houses like palaces. I have never seen such beautiful buildings.”