Complaints of blackmail led to arrest of models
Two Dhaka courts yesterday placed models Faria Mahbub Piasha and Moriom Akter Mou on three-day remand each in two cases filed under the Narcotics Control Act.
The Detective Branch of Dhaka Metropolitan Police had picked up Piasha and Mou from their homes in Baridhara and Mohammadpur on Sunday night.
Law enforcers claimed to have seized liquor and yaba pills from their homes. However, the arrestees told reporters during the DB drive that there were no drugs in their homes, rather the detectives planted them.
DB Sub-Inspector Shahidul Islam filed the case against Piasha with Gulshan Police Station while Inspector Shishir Kumar Karmakar of DB lodged the case against Mou with Mohammadpur Police Station.
During the drive, Mou alleged that she was being framed.
Speaking to The Daily Star yesterday, two security guards and a chef of Mou's house said the DB team took liquor into the house during the raid.
A security guard said, "A man came around 9:00pm [on Sunday] and told me that there was a parcel for Mou madam. He asked whether she was at home. I called madam over the intercom and found that she was at home. Within moments, 14-15 people in plainclothes entered our building. They took away our phones."
Another security guard told this newspaper, "They were asking: where is the whisky. As they found nothing illegal in the house after conducting a search for about two hours, they themselves were saying when the goods will come…. After 11:00pm, another 12-13 people came. They brought with them cartons."
Police, however, in the case statements claimed that the liquor and drugs were seized in the two houses.
The duo used to bring people to their house parties and sold liquor, and yaba pills. Another two-three people are involved in this crime, added the case statements.
Despite several attempts, this newspaper could not reach Harun Ur Rashid, joint commissioner of DB (North Division) of DMP, over the phone for comments.
Sources in the DB yesterday said detectives launched the drive against the models following complaints about blackmail from some influential people.
A source close to the investigation said Piasha got into trouble with an influential person of a business group. He was the first individual to have lodged a complaint with the DB about the model and it triggered Sunday's drive.
Police claimed that the two models are members of a blackmailing gang.
Yesterday, the investigation officers produced the arrestees before the courts seeking 10-day remand for each of the accused.
The defence in both the cases submitted petitions to the courts, seeking bail and cancellation of remand prayers, saying that their clients were implicated in the cases as part of a conspiracy to harass them.
The magistrates, however, rejected the bail prayers and placed the duo on remand.
BRIEFING AFTER ARRESTS
Briefing reporter after the arrests, DB Joint Commissioner Harun said they received complaints of blackmailing against the duo.
"These two models are the queen of night. They sleep in the day and carry out these activities at night. They are members of a blackmailing gang. They used to invite people from well-off families, arrange drugs for them and take compromising photos of them. Later, they would blackmail them with those photos," the DB official said.
The DB claimed to have seized 780 yaba pills, eight bottles of liquor and four bottles of beer from Piasha's Baridhara home.
It also claimed to have seized 750 yaba tablets and a 12-bottle carton of foreign liquor from Mou's Mohammadpur home.
Piasha, also a former TV presenter, is the ex-wife of Shafat Ahmed, son of the owner of Apan Jewellers. Her name first came to light after Shafat was accused of raping two female private university students in the capital's Raintree Hotel in 2017.
Shafat's father Dildar Hossain Selim later filed a case against Piasha on charges of extortion.
The model's name again came up recently following college student Munia's death by suicide at a Gulshan home after the deceased's elder sister named her in a case filed in this connection.
[Our court correspondent contributed to this report.]