Three country boat fishermen from the district have been arrested in Sri Lanka for allegedly attempting to smuggle beedi leaves weighing about one tonne to the island nation.
Sources in the Coastal Security Group here said the country boat from Terespuram, which had ventured into the sea for fishing on November 11 with N. Alangara Socrates, 26, of Rajapalayam, M. Dinesh, 26, of Periyaselvam Nagar in Thazhamuthu Nagar and K. Xavier, 28 of Vembar was spotted by Sri Lankan Coast Guard near Kalpatti of the island nation during routine patrolling.
The Coast Guard personnel intercepted the boat as it was reportedly inside the Sri Lankan waters and searched it. They found 1,000 kg of beedi leaves, packed in more than 15 polythene bundles, had been stuffed in a chamber.
The Coast Guard personnel handed over the trio with the beedi leaves to the Sri Lankan customs officials for further interrogation.