Tuesday, October 13, 2020

Kerala Gold Scam: 5 Accused Sent To NIA Custody; Swapna's Bail To Be Heard On Thursday

In the latest development in the Kerala gold smuggling case, a special NIA court in Kochi sent five accused in the case to NIA custody for three days. The five accused Abdu PT, Sharafuddhin KT, Muhammad Shafeeq, Hamjad Ali and Muhammad Ali, who had earlier been arrested by the investigating agency will now remain in NIA custody till October 14. The NIA Court will hear the bail applications of all five on Thursday, October 15. 

Meanwhile, the decision to grant bail to primary accused Swapna Suresh still looms large. On October 5, Suresh was granted bail by the Economic Offences Court in Kochi in the case filed by the Customs department. She secured bail because of the failure of Customs to file a charge sheet in 60 days. However, she continues to remain in jail as owing to the NIA case against her.

The NIA special court has posted the hearing for Swapna's bail application for Thursday. During the arguments, the counsel appearing for the NIA submitted, "We have not received the data retrieved by the Customs department yet. It may take some time."

On July 5, Customs officials seized 30 kg of gold worth Rs.15 crore at the Thiruvananthapuram Airport from a diplomatic cargo addressed to a person in the UAE Consulate. Sarith Kumar, who worked at the UAE Consulate was arrested in this regard. Reportedly, he told the Customs about the role of Swapna Suresh, an ex-Consulate employee working as the operations manager of the Kerala State Information Technology Infrastructure Limited.

12/10/20 Ananya Varma/Republic World.com

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