20 down: It cops blows from Aghan-Kiev cartel (6)
Sure, it’s simple, but the direct clue is funny: from Aghan-Kiev cartel = hankie = it cops blows.
18 down: Two ants caffeinated drink (3, 4)
There are red ants and there are bull ants, and so the answer to this clever clue is two ants = red bull = caffeinated drink.
23 across: A ship in sound, moored (2, 6)
Clever aural clue that uses a synonym in the same semantic range as the answer: a ship = a tanker, which gives a ship in sound = at anchor = moored.