Gang gets truck loaded with smuggled cigarettes released

RAwALPINDI           -        A group of alleged smugglers got a truck loaded with smuggled cigarettes released from the Customs Intelligence officials forcefully who had seized it (truck) near Islamabad Interchange on CPEC route, informed sources on Saturday. The incident of truck snatching by the smugglers’ gang took place at 6:30pm on March 1, 2023, the limits of Police Station (PS) Naseerabad, they said.

Sources disclosed that the gang of smugglers involved in the crime is being run by two Afghan nationals identified as Jawad and Fawad (commonly known as Tora Brothers), who had become untouchable for police, National Highway and Motorway Police and officials of Customs and Intelligence Islamabad/ Rawalpindi. The other two smugglers (partners of Tora Brothers) were identified Abdullah Jan and Haji Rashid alias Sheeda, a former spy master.

According to sources, the customs intelligence received information that the smugglers were trying to smuggle contrabands to Rawalpindi and Islamabad from Afghanistan and Quetta. A raiding party was constituted, which intercepted the truck near Islamabad Interchange near CPEC route and arrested the driver and conductor.

The smugglers (Tora Brothers), who came in 5 vehicles, blocked the road and held the customs officials hostage. They said that smugglers escaped along with the truck loaded with imported cigarettes worth Rs 40 million approximately in the market.

Sharing further details of the notorious smuggling gang, sources mentioned that the gang is being operated by two hardcore Afghan criminal brothers Jawad and Fawad involved in smuggling imported cigarettes, clothes, food stuff, chocolates toffees, bubble, and other useable items from Iran via Afghanistan. The gang used Motorway to smuggle these items in twin cities of Rawalpindi and Islamabad with no proper check and balance on part of police, NHMP and other LEAs, they said.

A senior official of customs intelligence claimed that they called the police and other law enforcement agencies but they did not respond. He said that the customs staff didn’t fire any gunshot due to the public safety, though the smugglers fired into the air to prevent them from chasing them. “Apparently, electronic goods, imported cloth and other smuggled goods were being smuggled to Rawalpindi and Islamabad by the dangerous gang of Tora Brothers,” he said. He said that a few months ago some 200 smugglers, all belonging to Tora Brothers’ gang, also attacked customs’ raiding team near Jhand in Attock and snatched trucks loaded with smuggling goods. Model Collectorate of Customs Collector Islamabad Hassan Saqib Sheikh was not available for his comments.

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