| 1.2°C Dublin

Drug lord who funded Taliban faces life in jail

An Afghan drug lord who became one of the world's largest heroin traffickers, providing funding to the Taliban, faces a life sentence in the US tomorrow.

Haji Bagcho sent heroin to more than 20 countries and was once responsible for trafficking a fifth of the world's heroin supply, prosecutors claimed.

In one year he was thought to have traded more than 125 tonnes of the drug, valued at hundreds of millions of euro, and used the proceeds to give weapons, cash and supplies to Taliban commanders fighting Nato forces.

Bagcho, aged about 60, operated a family business from Nangarhar province in eastern Afghanistan, and ran laboratories along the Pakistan border.

Khadi Gul, his younger brother, denied that Bagcho, who has 13 children from two wives, had ever given money to the Taliban. "He was a smuggler, that's true, everyone in our area is, but we don't agree that he gave money to the Taliban," he said. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent