Monday, January 31, 2022

UK police seize gold bars worth £650,000 at Heathrow Airport

British police have seized 15 gold bars worth £650,000 ($870,890) from a woman trying to take them from Heathrow Airport to India.

Officers from the National Crime Agency (NCA) worked with officials in India to prove the woman's claim that they were to be taken to a jewellers in India was false.

The NCA said they are linked to an international money laundering network based in Europe.

“Gold is an attractive commodity for criminals to use to move money because relatively small amounts can have a high value,” Commander Andy Noyes of the NCA said.

“Our investigation pointed to these gold bars belonging to a criminal money laundering network active in both Europe and Asia.

“We think they were attempting to move them through London to try and disguise their routing, and avoid the attentions of Indian law enforcement upon arrival there.”

The investigation was launched after Border Force officials stopped the woman, a Singaporean, at Heathrow Airport in March 2020 after she arrived on a flight from Singapore.

The woman was transiting through the airport to catch a plane to Chennai, India, and Border Force officers found the bars in her hand luggage.

31/01/22 Nicky Harley/National

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