‘Global leader of drug ring responsible for 18 tonne seizure’ arrested in UK

A man suspected of being the leader of a vast global drug production and distribution syndicate has been detained in the UK following investigations by the National Crime Agency (NCA) and the US Drug Enforcement Administration.

Aug 29, 2017

A man suspected of being the leader of a vast global drug production and distribution syndicate has been detained in the UK following investigations by the National Crime Agency (NCA) and the US Drug Enforcement Administration. Officers from the NCA and the Metropolitan Police Service arrested 58-year-old Pakistani national Muhammad Asif Hafeez at an address in north London on Friday (August 25). He is currently wanted in the US as he faces charges of conspiring to import drugs, and will now face extradition. Hafeez – known by other members in the network as ‘the Sultan’ – is alleged to have been the head of an international drug ring involved in making and distributing large numbers of narcotics, with links across Asia, Europe and North America. He is also suspected of importing heroin and methamphetamine into the US since 2013. One seizure related to Hafeez’s criminal activity recovered 99 kilograms of heroin, while another confiscated 18 tonnes of ephedrine in India. NCA branch commander Martin Huxley said: “This is a hugely significant arrest of a man suspected of being the head of a global drug production and distribution network, with links across Asia, Europe and North America. “Because of the scale of the criminality alleged here, this is an international investigation and the NCA has worked extremely closely with our partners in the US and UK. “The organised crime groups involved in drug trafficking at this level fuel violence and exploitation at every step, from the locations overseas where drugs are farmed and produced right through to the dealers on UK street corners.”

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