Monday, October 02, 2017

18 gold bars worth Rs 58 lakh found hidden in flight seat

Bengaluru: DRI sleuths recovered 18 gold bars worth over Rs 58 lakh from the economy class seat of an Etihad Airways flight from Abu Dhabi that landed at Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) here on Tuesday evening.
Investigators suspect the gold may have been placed for some tainted airport staff to retrieve and later slip it out of KIA to be handed over to smuggling racketeers. Sources said the Abu Dhabi-Bengaluru flight EY 236 landed around 8pm at KIA and sleuths of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), Bengaluru unit, entered after all passengers disembarked from the aircraft. "Following specific information, the DRI team combed the aircraft to unearth 18 gold bars hidden in the seat on row 19 of the economy class. The seized gold, weighing 2kg, is worth Rs 58 lakh in the market," said an officer.
Sleuths suspect the gold bars smuggled from UAE could be the handy work of professional gold smugglers who hide the bars in aircraft seat pockets possibly for an airport staff to collect later. The staff come under limited frisking by airport security personal, thus facilitating an easy passage out for the gold to be handed over to local members of the smuggling racket.The staff is often rewarded handsomely, sources said.
The seat in which the gold was placed was not booked and remained unoccupied during the course of the flight. Therefore, some other passenger, possibly the smuggler, had placed the gold bars in the specific seat as part of the plan. Probe
02/10/17 Times of India