"these life-destroying drugs have been intercepted."
A British Pakistani couple has been arrested for attempting to smuggle £2 million worth of heroin out of Pakistan. As a result, they could face capital punishment.
Pakistani authorities have identified the suspects as Mohammed Tahir Ayaz, aged 26, and his wife Ikra Hussain, aged 20, from Huddersfield, West Yorkshire.
They were arrested at Sialkot International Airport after they tried to board a flight to the UK via Dubai on Thursday, September 19, 2019.
According to the Airport Security Force (ASF), they allegedly found 25 kilograms of “fine quality” heroin concealed in Hussain’s clothing while her luggage was scanned.
It was reported that packets of the class A drugs were sewn into different parts of a number of clothes.
The officials seized the heroin, which was estimated to be worth millions of rupees on the international market or approximately £2 million.
A case was registered against the couple and they were arrested.
The couple allegedly told the ASF officials that they were attempting to bring the stash to the UK from Sialkot, Pakistan.
The couple were later handed over to the Anti-Narcotics Force (ANF) while further investigations were underway.
It was one of the most significant foiled attempts to smuggle heroin at Sialkot International Airport.
The ANF has very strict laws on smuggling drugs in or out of Pakistan, especially if it is such a huge amount.
The Mirror reported that if Ayaz and Hussain are found guilty, they could face life in prison or even the death penalty.
Paula Sherriff, MP for Dewsbury, said: “I understand that a Dewsbury couple have been arrested at an airport in Pakistan, allegedly attempting to smuggle a substantial quantity of heroin into the UK.
“This is an appalling crime and I am pleased to hear that these life-destroying drugs have been intercepted.”
Kirklees Council leader Shabir Pandor stated:
“If anyone breaks the law in this way it’s completely appalling and they are out of order.”
A spokesperson for the Foreign Office said: “We are urgently seeking more information from the Pakistani authorities following reported arrests of a British couple.”
This is not the first time where a drug smuggling attempt has been foiled.
Three relatives had imported at least £2.49 million worth of heroin into the UK from Pakistan.
The men brought the drugs through UK airports by concealing them within motorcycle gloves, equine dentistry equipment and boxing gloves.
Sultan Mahmood Butt, aged 37, Nibeel Saghir, aged 34, Rizwan Ahmed, aged 34, were arrested following an investigation which lasted several years.
They were found guilty in July 2019 and were jailed for a total of 45 years on August 9, 2019.