The Enforcement Directorate on Friday said that Bineesh Kodiyeri, son of Communist Party of India (Marxist) Kerala Secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, was the financier of the drug cartel, the Hindustan Times reported. This came a day after he was arrested by the Narcotics Control Bureau in Bengaluru in connection with the case.
Kodiyeri was sent to Enforcement Directorate’s custody on Thursday for four days after he failed to provide convincing answers about the alleged funding of the racket.
In a statement on Friday, the investigating agency said Kodiyeri admitted that drug peddler Anoop Mohammed was his “benami” and allegedly ensured fund from various sources.
Kodiyeri has now been booked under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act and later more cases will be slapped on him under the Narcotics Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act by the Narcotics Control Bureau, according to Hindustan Times. The narcotics agency will move a separate plea for custodial interrogation of Kodiyeri in a couple of days, a senior official told the newspaper.
The name of the CPI(M) leader’s son surfaced in the drug cases when Anoop Mohammed, a native of Kochi, was held by the Narcotics Control Bureau and questioned. Mohammed was caught peddling drugs under the cover of running a hotel in Bengaluru. Kodiyeri had later admitted that he knew Mohammed and helped him in setting up his business, but was not aware of his drug dealings.
It was also found out that Rs 50 lakh was deposited into Mohammed’s account in the last six months and the investigating agency suspects Kodiyeri to be one of the financers of the drug cartel.
Meanwhile, during investigation of a gold smuggling case in Kerala, the Enforcement Directorate also found links between that and the drug case. Kodiyeri was questioned by the Enforcement Directorate in relation to the smuggling case as well on 9 September.
The investigating agency had on Wednesday arrested suspended Indian Administrative Service officer and Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan’s former Principal Secretary M Sivasankar in the gold smuggling case.