Bhubaneswar: Forest Department officials Saturday busted a snake venom smuggling racket by arresting three smugglers in Bhubaneswar.
Informing about the operation, Divisional Forest Officer (DFO) Alok Kumar Mishra said that the Forest Department was tipped off about the snake venom smugglers being active in the city.
“Immediately a plan was devised and a trap was laid out. Our undercover officials introduced themselves to the smugglers as prospective customers. With a deal being finalized at Rs 10 lakh, a place for exchanging venom containers for cash was also finalized. It was a place somewhere behind Capital Hospital and not far from Ganga Nagar Square,” he added.
“As per the earlier discussion, our officials reached the spot at the pre-decided time. It was when the smugglers were about to hand over the containers, our officials who were loitering nearby in plain clothes nabbed the trio,” he informed.
While the Forest Department is yet to disclose their identities, one thing is clear that the trio belongs to Bolangir district.
The Forest Department will grill the accused to know more about the racket and the species of snake the venom was collected from, it was learnt.
The Forest Department is also on the job to find out if the trio has any similar criminal antecedents.