New Delhi: National Investigation Agency (NIA) has filed a charge-sheet before Special Court for NIA Cases, Ernakulam, Kerala against twenty (20) accused persons namely (1) Sarith P. S. resident of Thiruvananthapuram district; (2) Swapna Prabha Suresh resident of Thiruvananthapuram district; (3) Ramees K. T. resident of Malappuram district; (4) Jalal A. M. resident of Ernakulam district; (5) Mohammed Shafi P. resident of Malappuram district; (6) Saidalavi E. resident of Malappuram district; (7) Abdu P. T. resident Malappuram district; (8) Rabins Hameed resident of Ernakulam district; (9) Muhammedali Ebrahim resident of Ernakulam district, (10) Muhammedali resident of Ernakulam district; (11) Sharafuddeen K. T. resident of Malappuram district; (12) Mohammed Shafeeq A. resident of Malappuram district; (13) Hamzath Abdulsalam resident of Malappuram district; (14) Samju T. M. resident of Kozhikode district; (15) Hamjad Ali K. resident of Malappuram district; (16) Jifsal C. V. resident of Kozhikode district; (17) Aboobacker P. resident of Malappuram district; (18) Muhammed Abdu Shameem K. V. resident of Kozhikode district; (19) Abdul Hameed resident of Malappuram district and (20) Shamshudeen resident of Kozhikode district under sections 16, 17, 18 and 20 of UA (P) Act in Trivandrum Gold Smuggling Case.
The case was registered by NIA on July 10, 2020, against Sarith P. S. Swapna Prabha Suresh, Faisal Fareed, Sandeep Nair and others under sections 16, 17 and 18 of UA (P) Act consequent to the seizure of around 30 Kg of gold worth ₹ 14.82 crores on July 5, 2020, at Trivandrum International Airport by Customs (Preventive) Commissionerate, Cochin, from the import cargo addressed to the Charge D’ Affaires at the Consulate General of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in Thiruvananthapuram.
Absconding accused Swapna Prabha Suresh and Sandeep Nair were arrested by NIA from Bengaluru on July 11, 2020. During the ensuing investigation, thirty-one more persons, who had conspired and financed gold smuggling besides facilitated the disposal of the contraband and transfer of proceeds thereof to the UAE through hawala channels, for purchasing and smuggling more gold, with the intention of threatening the economic security of India, were arraigned as accused in the case. Till now, twenty-one accused persons have been arrested in the case by NIA, while eight accused persons are absconding.
The NIA investigation hitherto has revealed that the accused had knowingly conspired since June 2019, raised funds and smuggled from UAE, between November 2019 and June 2020, around 167 Kgs of gold, through the import cargo addressed to diplomats at the Consulate General of UAE in Thiruvananthapuram. Significantly the main accused in this case had also planned to smuggle more gold from countries like Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Malaysia.
Investigation continues against the absconding accused persons and others who had facilitated this crime.