Amazon executives in India charged with using website to smuggle drugs

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Local Amazon executives in India have been charged with using the website to smuggle marijuana, police have said.

Offices in the central state of Madhya Pradesh arrested two men with 20kg of the drug on 14 November.

State police said they later discovered that the men were using the Amazon India website to order and smuggle the substance under the guise of stevia leaves - a natural sweetener - to other states.

They said in a statement on Saturday that executive directors of Amazon India were being named as accused under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act due to differences in answers in documents provided by the company in response to police questions and facts unearthed by discussion.

Police did not disclose how many executives were charged.

The police, who had previously summoned and spoken to Amazon executives in the case, estimate that about 1,000kg of marijuana, worth roughly $110,000 (£82,000), was sold via Amazon.

Amazon said in a statement that it does not allow the listing and sale of legally prohibited products, adding that it
takes strict action against sellers in case of any contravention.

"The issue was notified to us and we are currently investigating it," Amazon said of the alleged marijuana

Indian authorities have in recent years intensified their efforts to crack down on illicit drugs.

Many high-profile Indian actors and TV personalities have been under scrutiny from narcotics officials since last year.

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