Hyderabad: As many as 640 non-duty paid foreign liquor bottles were destroyed by the Prohibition and Excise Department using a road roller on Wednesday.
The cost of the liquor bottles that were crushed under the road roller was around Rs 40 lakh. Popular brands like Black Label, Gold Label, Glenlivet, Glenfiddich, Absolut and Red Label among others were destroyed.
Last year, the department had achieved a major breakthrough when cases were booked against a few officials working at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport (RGIA) in Shamshabad for clandestinely selling foreign liquor bottles to unauthorized persons.
On May 17, 2017, around 82 foreign liquor bottles were seized from a customs officer residing in Narayanguda. On the same day, contraband of 74 bottles was recovered from another officer staying in Uppal.
Searches continued at different places leading to the arrest of four customs officials working in RGIA and unearthing a huge network of officials, smugglers and customers in selling foreign liquor. As the investigation and raids progressed, the department arrested two notorious foreign liquor smugglers B Shiva Patil and N Harish Singh.
From these two persons and their associates, over 1373 bottles were confiscated. Shiva Patil on whom eight cases were booked has been sent to jail under Preventive Detention (PD) Act. A crackdown on inter-State smuggling also led to seizing of two transport buses which were involved in the same crime.