Acting on a tip-off that a few Nigerians were trying to sell cocaine to drug addicts, a police team went to Jubilee Check Post where they found Nigerian national Samson Ebuka having money transactions with film director Anugu Shushanth Reddy and businessman Panasa Ravi Kumar, Deputy Commissioner of Police (West Zone) A Venkateshwara Rao told reporters.
Based on suspicion, the police team apprehended the trio and on being quizzed, Samson admitted that he supplied cocaine to drug addicts and would get the contrabands from his Nigerian friends, he said.
Subsequently, Rotimi Olusola Kehinde alias Sola, Samson, Uzor Promise Chukwudi and Attoh Bosha Kelvin, all Nigerians, Shushanth Reddy and Ravi Kumar were arrested, the DCP said.
Police seized 90grams of cocaine, 400grams of ganja, six mobile phones, Rs 10,000 in cash and two Nigerian passports from the accused.
Two other Nigerians also allegedly involved in drug-peddling, identified as Victor and Patric, are absconding. All the four Nigerians arrested today and the two absconding were earlier also held in similar cases.
During interrogation, it further came to light that Sola and the other Nigerians were supplying the drugs to the Telugu film artists at exorbitant rates, Rao said adding that the accused were getting the drugs from Mumbai and Goa.
Shushanth Reddy, the director of yet-to-be-released Telugu flick ‘Superstar Kidnap’, received cocaine at Rs 5,000 per gram for personal consumption, police said.
“He was also taken into custody and two grams of cocaine were seized from his possession. He got into the habit of consuming drugs through Ravi Uppalapati, a film producer,” the senior police officer said.
Ravi Kumar, who is into promoting and doing advertisements of Telugu film industry’s newly-released movies, was also taken into custody and two grams cocaine were seized from his possession.
He got into drug addiction through Sushanth Reddy, Rao said adding that further probe was on in the case. In July and August 2010 and later in 2011, Hyderabad Police had busted several drug-rackets involving Nigerian and Ugandan nationals who also helped them in exposing the drug mafia-Telugu film industry nexus.
The arrested persons had reportedly admitted their clients included actors and actresses from Telugu film industry and important personalities from posh localities of Hyderabad.