MEMBERS of a major drug trafficking operation, who smuggled more than BD300,000 worth of hashish into the country, have been jailed.

Five Saudi men were yesterday found guilty of being part of the network, trafficking and drug dealing by the High Criminal Court.

Four of them were jailed for 15 years each and fined BD10,000 each, while the fifth man was jailed for life in prison.

Two Bahraini men, who were also implicated in the case for drug dealing, were pardoned for helping authorities in busting the network, while a Bahraini woman was jailed for six months for possessing hashish.

According to case files, the defendants communicated with each other using social media application Snapchat and smuggled drugs through King Fahad Causeway and sold them in Bahrain.

They were arrested when authorities uncovered hashish inside tyres of a vehicle parked in Juffair in March this year.

One of the Bahraini men, aged 30, denied smuggling the narcotics into the country during questioning by prosecutors but admitted to being the middleman by collecting the money and drugs.

“I met a Saudi person on Snapchat and he introduced me to his Saudi friends,” he said in his statement to the prosecution.

“I helped them sell the drugs in the country by collecting money and drugs from different people.

“(When I was arrested) I helped authorities arrest the drug dealer who smuggled drugs into Bahrain via the King Fahad Causeway.

“I got paid BD700 a week for my services.”

A police detective, who investigated the case, told prosecutors that informants helped him uncover the drug trafficking ring.

“I received information about a group of Saudi men smuggling large hauls of drugs into the country inside car tyres,” said the 34-year-old Bahraini in his statement.

“I also found out from my secret sources that two Bahraini men were helping in the drug dealing operation.

“The defendants smuggled more than BD300,000 worth of drugs into the country and they fitted them in vehicle tyres.”

Authorities confiscated packs of hashish worth thousands of dinars in the possession of the defendants and hidden inside the tyres.

The Saudi defendants will be deported after completing their sentences.