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The Anti-Narcotics and Money Laundering Division in the General Directorate of Customs announced that “a suspicious shipment being prepared for shipment by sea through the Port of Beirut to a European country was detected. It consisted of stone ovens (tandoors) that were closely monitored. The senders, who used fake identities, were observed moving cautiously between the regions of Bekaa and Keserwan.”

It was stated that “through intensive intelligence efforts, the identities of network members and their whereabouts were determined in order to arrest them after confirming that the shipment contained drugs.”

The statement also pointed out that “the mastermind behind the operation had a criminal record. Upon obtaining information about his communication with a second group of smugglers in the areas of Sin el-Fil and Bourj Hammoud, the second group was monitored, and the location of one of its main members, named H.N., was determined in the Nabaa area.”

The statement further elaborated upon the matter, detailing that “the movements of H.N were observed, and he was arrested on June 16, 2023, in the Jisr Al-Basha area, in possession of forged identification cards and documents that he used for his travels. A machine for manufacturing sesame paste, intended for export to Paraguay, containing 121 kilograms of cannabis.”

Simultaneously, through continued monitoring, investigations, and raids, a quantity of 937 kilograms of cannabis was seized within the shipment of ovens.

The identities of all the fugitive gang members were determined, and efforts are underway to arrest them. As per the statement, the investigations were conducted under the supervision of the Public Prosecutor’s Office, then the detainee and the case file were handed over to the Central Anti-Narcotics Office in the Internal Security Forces.