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Biggest LSD haul, darknet cartel busted

NCB unearths pan-India trafficking | 6 held, all in their 20s

Biggest LSD haul, darknet cartel busted

The accused in NCB custody. PTI



Tribune News Service

New Delhi, June 6

The Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) today said it had busted a pan-India drugs trafficking network operating on the darknet with the “largest-ever” single seizure of 15,000 LSD blots in one operation and the arrest of six persons in the age group of 25-28 years.

14,961 LSD blots seized

  • LSD (lysergic acid diethylamide) is a synthetic chemical-based drug
  • It’s trafficked by painting it on blots, half the size of a stamp paper Cryptocurrency, UPI used
  • LSD sourced from Poland, the Netherlands via crypto, UPI
  • Contraband shipped through couriers, postal networks
  • Suppliers, consumers interacted only on darknet

The seizure, as per officials, is estimated to be worth over Rs 10 crore (Rs 5,000-7,000 per blot) in the international market and all six who have been taken into custody, beginning late last month, are students and youngsters who wanted to make “easy money” by remaining anonymous within the deep layers of secret internet-based apps and messenger service like WICKR.

LSD or lysergic acid diethylamide is a synthetic chemical-based drug and is categorised as a hallucinogen. It is trafficked by painting it on blots, half the size of a stamp paper, and is consumed by licking or swallowing.

Darknet Encrypted Internet with restricted access for illegal info sharing

“This is the largest-ever seizure of LSD blots in the country in a single operation. Six youngsters have been arrested till now and we are on the trail of one more such cartel,” said NCB Deputy Director General (northern region) Gyaneshwar Singh.

A total of 14,961 blots were seized as part of the two-week operation and the blots were of “gammagoblin and holy spirit of asura brand”, Singh said.

LSD abuse can lead to serious health issues, Singh said. Till now, the highest seizure of LSD was 5,000 blots by the Karnataka Police over the entire span of 2021 and about a similar number of blots were seized by the Kolkata NCB in 2022 in a single operation. Singh said the seized LSD was sourced from Poland and the Netherlands and the syndicate had been trafficking across various states by taking payments through cryptocurrency and UPI. The contraband was shipped through couriers and postal networks, he said, adding that the NCB was trying to freeze the crypto funds.

“The suppliers and consumers intercepted by us had no personal interaction and every contact was on the darknet,” Singh said.

Meanwhile, Home Minister Amit Shah congratulated the federal anti-narcotics agency on the achievement.

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