Madikeri: A wanted timber smuggler Kallichanda Lobin (54) was nabbed by sleuths of District Crime Investigation Bureau in Madikeri on Sunday and seized a truck load of wooden logs. The seized logs, worth around Rs 1 crore in the market, were meant to be transported to Kerala via Kutta.
Along with wanted Lobin, a coffee planter, his two accomplices were also nabbed and two other vehicles used in transport of illegally felled logs were also seized.
DCIB sources told Deccan Chronicle that the sleuths came across the truck while they were conducting a search at Kutta in Virajpet taluk of the district on Sunday. The logs seized were of jackfruit and rosewood trees. In all, 222 logs of jackfruit and 39 logs of rosewood were seized. Later 24 pieces of rosewood logs were also recovered from Lobin’s estate.
Sleuths said that Lobin operated his business through a pilot vehicle for the truck transporting the logs while he himself escorted the truck from behind to make sure that the log laden truck safely crossed the border. Truck driver Rajendra and pilot vehicle driver Dawood were held by DCIB sleuths. Lobin was notorious for timber smuggling and wanted by police in many cases. He owned a coffee plantation and stashed illegally felled logs in his plantation. Lobin was booked for various sections of Forest Act and an SUV used by him in escorting the truck has been seized with other two vehicles used in the crime. Gonnikoppa police have
registered a case.