Mrunal Manmay Dash

The Tamando Police in Bhubaneswar Urban Police District (UPD) busted an India Made Foreign Liquor (IMFL) smuggling gang and arrested three including its mastermind Sonu Jena on Monday.

The police have also seized 168 cartons of liquor and a truck from their possession.

The accused including Jena were arrested from Bolagarh in Nayagarh. Jena is said to be a dreaded liquor mafia operating out of Nayagarh.

The arrests were made after the officials of an IMFL unit at Bhagabanpur, Patrapada on the outskirts of Bhubaneswar had lodged a complaint at the Tamando Police Station about theft of 950 cartons of IMFL worth Rs 57 lakh bound for Sambalpur in a truck. Following the complaint, the police sprang into action and seized 168 cartons of foreign liquor from the truck and arrested the accused.

Speaking to the reporters, Bhubaneswar DCP, Prateek Singh said, “We had received a complaint about theft of an IMFL-laden truck from Bhubaneswar. The Tamando Police has nabbed them from Angul. The accused have antecedent of similar crimes. We are searching for others involved in this racket.”

"We are verifying their character antecedents and involvement in past cases. We will deal with them accordingly after verifying all the facts,” Singh added.

Rajat Kumar Ray, ACP Zone-3 said, “The officials of IMFL had tracked the mobile number of the driver. When they saw that the truck has diverted from its route and moving towards Chhattisgarh, they informed us. We located the IMEI of the driver’s mobile phone and seized the truck. After investigation, we arrested the prime accused from Bolagarh.”

“Jena has 25 other cases pending against him at different police stations,” Ray said.

The police will apply for a seven-day remand of the accused today.

(Reported By Alok Mohanty, OTV)