Karachi ACCU First Ever Seizure: Attempt to Smuggle Drugs to Saudi Arabia and UAE Foiled


6 September 2016, Karachi - The Karachi Air Cargo Control Unit (ACCU) marked its first ever seizure by interdicting a total of 4.6 kg heroin and 8.9 kg ICE (crystal meth) from two similar air consignments, destined for Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates respectively. The seized drugs were cleverly concealed in handcrafted marble souvenir pieces.

One consignment containing 1.7 kg heroin and 7.9 kg ICE was headed to Dammam (KSA); while the other containing 2.9 kg heroin and 1 kg ICE was bound for Dubai (UAE). Three culprits were arrested, and further investigations are in process.

The ACCU is a joint enforcement unit established under the framework of the UNODC-WCO Global Container Control Programme (CCP). After over a decade of successful operation at the major seaports of around 30 countries, the CCP decided to expand the exercise into airports.

The Government of Pakistan volunteered to establish the first Pilot ACCU, at Jinnah International Airport Karachi. This Pilot Unit underwent a practical training course conducted by international experts in early 2016. In July 2016 the unit received an 'Air Cargo Security Training' session co-organized by UNODC and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).

This seizure marks the first operational result of the Karachi Pilot ACCU.

Australia, Canada, Denmark, the European Union, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, Norway, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the USA are contributors to the global implementation of the CCP.

The establishment of the ACCU Karachi was enabled owing to contributions from Denmark and the USA.