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Police accuse the rats of losing cannabis

Indian officers claim rodents ate hundreds of kilograms of stored cannabis as evidence

Indian Police Service officials pointed out “fearless mice” as the culprits responsible for the disappearance of hundreds of kilograms of cannabis seized from drug traffickers and stored as evidence in drug trafficking cases.

The unusual explanation came after a court in Uttar Pradesh state on Saturday asked law enforcement to produce the confiscated marijuana for several ongoing drug cases dating back to 2018. Police reportedly responded by saying that she could not provide the total amount because the rats had destroyed 195 kilograms of cannabis in one case. The rodents, they said, had also eaten “some” evidence in another case involving 386 kilograms of drugs.

“Rats are tiny animals and they are not afraid of the police”, law enforcement officials said, stating that “It’s hard to protect the drug from them.” Mathura Prosecutor Ranveer Singh further explained that there is no place in the police station where cannabis could be safe from rats.

Judge Sanjay Chaudhary acknowledged that the police “didn’t have the expertise” to deal with such small rodents and noted that some 700 kilograms of marijuana seized by law enforcement are currently in police stations in Mathura district and all of this is at risk of being infested with rats. The judge went on to suggest that the only way to protect cannabis against “such fearless mice” was to auction it off to drug research labs and medical companies and ship the proceeds to the government.

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The court has now ordered the police to find a way to deal with the “The Rat Menace” and produce evidence that the rodents did in fact destroy the 581 kilograms of marijuana, worth an estimated six million Indian rupees ($7,341).

A similar case occurred in 2018 in Argentina, when eight police officers were fired after accusing mice of being responsible for the disappearance of half a ton of cannabis from a police warehouse. Their claims were dismissed after forensic experts pointed out that the animals were unlikely to mistake the drug for food and that there would have been “many corpses” ffound in the warehouse if the mice used marijuana.

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