Kenyan Car Dealer Arrested with Ksh 532M Cocaine in Sri Lanka

Bandaranaike International Airport in Sri Lanka.
Bandaranaike International Airport in Sri Lanka.

A 26-year-old Kenyan car dealer was arrested in Sri Lanka on September 24th, carrying cocaine valued at Ksh 532,157,188. 

The man had arrived from Ethiopia, transiting through Doha, Qatar, before reaching Sri Lanka's Katunayake Bandaranaike International Airport.

Upon inspection, customs authorities discovered 180 capsules of cocaine, concealed inside three metal cookie tins within the suspect's luggage. 

Sri Lankan authorities did not release the name of the second-hand car dealer. 

Drug-filled Capsules
A photo of drug-filled capsules.

The Kenyan had tried to exit the country using the 'green channel,' a lane intended for passengers without restricted or excessive goods beyond the admissible duty-free allowance. 

However, suspicions were raised, leading to a thorough search.

“He was arrested by customs officers while attempting to exit through the ‘Green Channel’ at the airport based on foreign intelligence received by the Sri Lanka Customs narcotics control unit,” reads a report by a Sri Lankan publication.

The 'green channel' is typically for passengers with no Customs formalities, but random checks can be conducted, including luggage scanning and physical examinations if necessary.

Despite this being his first visit to Sri Lanka, foreign intelligence had alerted the Customs Narcotics Control Division, leading to a targeted arrest. 

Presently, the man is in the custody of the Katunayake Airport Police Narcotics Bureau (PNB) pending further investigation.

Sadly, this incident is part of an alarming trend involving Kenyan nationals caught in drug trafficking, particularly in Asian countries. 

Barely two weeks ago, a Kenyan woman was apprehended at Bengaluru airport in India attempting to smuggle Ksh211 million worth of cocaine into the country.

Similarly, less than a month ago, three other women were arrested in Thailand for attempting to smuggle drugs into the country.

Photo of Phuket International Airport
Photo of Phuket International Airport where three women were arrested trying to smuggle cocaine into Thailand.
Phuket International Airport
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