US court imprisons Afghan drug lord for 15 years

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NEW YORK, Oct 6 (Reuters) An Afghan heroin kingpin was sentenced to more than 15 years in prison for heading a drug trafficking ring, US officials said.

Baz Mohammad was the first person to be extradited to the United States from Afghanistan, US Attorney Michael Garcia and Karen Tandy, head of the US Drug Enforcement Administration, said in a statement yesterday.

He pleaded guilty in Manhattan federal court in July to heading an international heroin trafficking ring that manufactured and distributed millions of dollars worth of the drug in Afghanistan and Pakistan.

The heroin was then transported to the United States hidden in suitcases, clothing and containers, the statement said.

''This drug kingpin bragged that he waged jihad against Americans by poisoning them with his heroin,'' Tandy said. ''His attack was unconventional, and his massive drug profits funded the Taliban and other extremist organizations dedicated to destroying freedom and justice.'' Mohammad led the ring between 1990 and 2005. Afghan President Hamid Karzai authorised Mohammad's extradition to the United States in October 2005.

Afghanistan's opium crop, which is used to produce heroin, accounts for more than 90 per cent of the world's supply.


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