Nov 30, 2012 News Comments Off on Cocaine-in-coconut milk…One jailed, one remanded for $$M Malaysia shipment
The two men who were charged in connection with the shipment of cocaine that was discovered in canned coconut milk, and which arrived in Malaysia earlier this month, made their appearance yesterday at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court before acting Chief Magistrate Priya Sewnarine-Beharry. One of the accused, Luknauth Danesar, pleaded guilty and was sentenced to four years’ imprisonment and fined $30,000.
Danesar of 1 Coldingen, East Coast Demerara was jointly charged with Vijay Bisraj of 57 First Street Section B, Non Pareil, East Coast Demerara,
Danesar, who is the Manager of New Sococo Enterprise (a packaging plant) was charged with trafficking an “unknown quantity of cocaine”. He pleaded guilty to that charge while his co-accused, Bisraj, pleaded not guilty to a charge which stated that he was in possession of two tins of coconut milk which contained liquid cocaine.
Customs Anti Narcotics Unit Prosecutor Oswald Massiah in presenting his case to the court on the first accused, Danesar, said that between August 1st and November 20th of this year, the manager of the packaging plant, using his expertise, conspired to conceal liquid cocaine in coconut milk cans.
Meanwhile, the prosecutor noted that Bisraj had worked at New Sococo Enterprise for 10 years before leaving to become a fisherman and he had used his expertise in sealing cans to conspire with persons unknown to conceal cocaine in the cans, however he was “shortchanged” for the job, so he took two cans of cocaine which he was found with.
Meanwhile Danesar, when asked if he had anything to say, told the court that he had no knowledge as to where the items he packaged were being sent. He further stated that he was paid $100,000 to do the job and was promised $1M more when the cocaine would have arrived at its destination. The accused went on to state that he willingly participated because he needed the money to maintain his three children and was not working for sufficient money to do so.
Bisraj was represented by Attorney Shellon Boyce, who told the court that while the two cans were found at her client’s premises, he was not there at the time of the discovery. Further, Ms. Boyce said that Bisraj’s premises is frequented by numerous individuals.
Meanwhile the Magistrate in handing down her ruling said she took into consideration that Danesar did not waste the court’s time or the state’s resources. He was then sentenced.
Bisraj was remanded to prison and will make his next court appearance on December 7 at the Vigilance Magistrate’s Court.
A few weeks ago Malaysian authorities had seized a container filled with a reported US$7M in cocaine in liquid coconut milk which originated in Guyana.
It is believed that the US’ Drugs Enforcement Administration (DEA) may have been tracking the container since it left these shores.
Bernama News in Malaysia had reported that Bukit Aman Narcotics CID director Datuk Noor Rashid Ibrahim said the tactic was foiled by the Selangor Customs Department after detaining a ship carrying a container cargo in which a section contained drugs worth RM22 (US$7.1M).
“Based on information from United States Drug Enforcement Administration (USDEA), the ship which arrived on Monday (Nov 12) at Port Klang was filled with 980 cartons of cans containing coconut milk and pieces of pineapple.”
Bernama reported that 16 cartons comprising 384 cans of coconut milk were identified as mixtures with 400 grammes of cocaine in each can by the Malaysia’s Chemistry Department.
Ibrahim said the container which originated from Guyana was to be sent to Mozambique. From that transit point, it was to be transferred to another ship.
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