A “gun battle” between drug traffickers and Police in Nkhotakota broke out on Saturday evening but the law enforcers confiscated 99 bags of 50kilogrmme of narcotic drugs suspected to be Indian Hemp.
The alleged traffickers are still at large after they abandoned the vehicle they used in transporting the drug.
Nkhotakota Police spokesperson Sergeant Kaitano Lubrino confirmed the development in a statement made available to NyasaTimes.
Lubrino said on the material day, the traffickers, who were travelling in a Toyota Hiace registration number PE 2177 bearing an ownership of M. Maulidi of P.O Box 3365 Blantyre, were heading in the direction of Salima Boma from Dwangwa direction along the M5 lakeshore road.
“When they reached Nkhotakota Police roadblock they passed through unsearched by following very closely two other vehicles that where in front of them but later they abandon the vehicle carrying the dangerous drug fearing heavy armed police officers who were chasing them,” the Police Publicist said.
According to the Officer in Charge of the roadblock Sub inspector Andrew Machemba the traffickers did manage to pass through and failed to comply with an order to stop.
“Immediately the Police fired three shots at the Minibus’s fuel tank side but this did not make the traffickers to stop. Fortunately, one of the junior cops manning the roadblock has a car and Police used it in chasing the traffickers whilst shooting in the air to stop the driver but he didn’t.
“But after about 15 kilometers of cat and mouse chase, Police found the alleged Minibus abandoned in the bush besides the M5 road and the traffickers gone,” Lubrino said.
The drug traffickers are reported to have also fired shots.
This is a second time Police in the district have seized large amounts of Chamba. Earleir this year the Court there fined two men K400 000.00 each or in default to serve a 7 years jail after it found them guilty for being found in possession of 52 bags of Indian hemp without licence.