‘Pizza oven smugglers’ accused over port haul
Two alleged drug smugglers have gone on trial accused of importing more than 65kg of amphetamines hidden in industrial-sized pizza ovens, The pair were arrested along with captagon tablets with a street value of Dhs17 million, Dubai Court of First Instance heard yesterday. The Syrian men, aged 24 and 32, denied the charges. Prosecutors said that the amphetamine haul - which amounted to 331,000 pills - was found in a warehouse at Al Quoz on April 24, 2015. Officers said the seizure was one of the biggest of last year. Dubai Police received information that the haul had come into the country and was stored in the warehouse. An Emirati police major, aged 36, testified: “They confessed they received a large amount of drugs hidden inside the ovens. The receipts and documents of the oven shipment were all in the second defendant’s name.” It is alleged that some of the drugs had been sold locally while the rest were to be smuggled out of the country. The pair claimed the head of the ring was a 40-year-old Arab who is already in jail in Kuwait for a drug offence. Police arrested a fourth suspect, who they said was selling the pills among young locals and expats in the UAE. The trial was adjourned until later this month, when the court will hear from the defence lawyer.