Sunday, June 25, 2017

Good Ol’ gold sneak tricks back at cochin airport

Kochi:  For two years, Cochin International Airport (CIAL) remained largely off the radar of gold smugglers. Hawk-eyed vigil of Customs officers forced them to seek safer alternatives. Now, it has once again become a conduit for those sneaking in the yellow metal. According to a senior Customs officer in CIAL, as much as 19 kg gold was seized between January and May this year. This was not a big haul considering the gold flow between 2012 and 2014.
There was a decline in smuggling cases in the past two years after Customs officers tightened the noose. “Now, the flow seems to be gaining strength if the hauls in the first five months of this year are any indication,” he told The Sunday Standard.

Though smuggling has resumed, there is no innovation as far as the techniques are concerned. Last week, the Customs busted two gold smuggling attempts through CIAL.
In the first case, the carrier converted the contraband into crude gold granules and concealed them in the upper portion of 10 perfume bottles in his check-in baggage, said the officer.
In the second case, Air Intelligence Unit officers confiscated seven pieces of crude gold wires weighing 1.166 kg from a passenger arriving from Dubai last week. The wires, cleverly concealed as silver-coloured beadings inside the central frame of a trolley bag, were seized from a certain Mujeeb Parambattu of Kozhikode.

He arrived on an Indigo flight early morning, said Additional Commissioner S Anilkumar.
He was trying to exit without declaring the contraband worth `34 lakh in the open market.
24/06/17  Dhinesh Kallungal/Indsian Express