Six People Arrested In Int’l Opium Smuggling Ring Dubbed ‘Operation Flying Carpets’
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Two people were taken into custody Thursday morning on Long Island in connection with a international opium smuggling operation.
The pair, identified as 52-year-old Mehrdad Samoukian, of Roslyn Heights, and 59-year-old Mahmoud Mowla, of Middle Village, Queens, was arrested at a home at 226 Warner Avenue in Roslyn Heights in Nassau County.
The alleged operation, which reads like something out of the movies, involved drugs purchased from nomads on the Afghanistan-Iranian border, 1010 WINS’ Al Jones reported.
LISTEN: 1010 WINS’ Al Jones Reports
The drugs were allegedly hidden in chocolate boxes and rolled up in Persian rugs before being driven to Hamburg, Germany and shipped to New York, Los Angeles and Washington D.C.
The alleged operation even had its own jargon. Federal authorities said an intercepted cell phone call from one defendant spoke of a price of “Not less than $35 a foot,” meaning $35,000 per kilogram.
“I never would have thought that this is something that would’ve been happening on my street,” one neighbor said.
Two others were also rounded up in the Washington D.C. area Thursday morning, while two more suspects were arrested in Iran.
Authorities are still investigating to see how big of an operation it really was, but the smugglers apparently weren’t too happy with their product.
Another cell phone recording, intercepted by federal authorities, caught one suspect complaining about the opium — saying it was garbage and not even Mexican quality.
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