Friday, January 29, 2021

7 booked for smuggling gold

Ahmedabad: Two customs superintendents and five others have been booked by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) allegedly for smuggling in gold, saffron, and gutka from Dubai and Abu Dhabi through the Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel International Airport. The CBI acted on the basis of a complaint forwarded to them by the customs department in Ahmedabad.

An FIR registered by the CBI on January 19 named customs superintendents Somnath Chaudhary and Sujeet Kumar, both earlier posted with the air intelligence unit, as accused. The others named are Sajahan Chowdhary, Shahidul Chowdhary, Mohammed Mansuri, all from Valsad, Mohammed Azam from Mumbai and Shamim from Dubai.

The CBI FIR mentions that sanction under section 174 of the Prevention of Corruption Act 1988 has been obtained to investigate the offences against the two customs officials.

Senior CBI officials said they had received a written complaint from the customs department that some unscrupulous persons based in Vapi had engaged carriers to smuggle in gold paste as well as 24-carat gold jewellery from Dubai and Abu Dhabi through Ahmedabad airport.

The FIR stated, "The Directorate of Revenue Intelligence had on June 27, 2019 intercepted Sajahan and Mansuri who had arrived by Etihad Airways flight EY-226. The DRI seized gold chains weighing 1.4kg, 1.8kg of gold paste from which 1.1kg of pure gold was extracted, 10kg of Iranian saffron and 4,000 pouches containing 4gm of gutka from them."

The FIR mentioned that Sajahan and his brother Shahidul ran a jewellery shop in the name of M/s Tinkubhai Jewellers in Vapi and also had a gold refinery in Vapi. The smuggled gold was supposed to be delivered to Vapi.

29/01/21 Times of India

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