Gold worth Rs 1.19 cr seized from flyer at KIA

In what is the biggest seizure of smuggled gold from an individual this year at the Kempegowda International Airport, customs officials confiscated gold worth Rs 1.19 crore from a passenger.

The man, who hails from Chamarajanagar, was travelling to Bengaluru from Dubai and had hidden the gold in a bench vice. He hid two gold bars worth one kilogram each and four cut pieces of a bar.

“They were wrapped in black insulation tapes and were neatly packed in a small compartment made of thick iron sheets inside the bench vice,” an official of the customs department said.

Having concealed the gold inside the bench vice, a thick iron sheet was welded and ground over the compartment to cover the area. The vice was painted to make it appear genuine. Besides the essential parts, around 7.6 kilograms of iron was packed with the bench vice to hide the gold. “The item appeared to be suspicious when we scanned it. Air Intelligence officials then questioned the passenger. His responses prompted the officials to thoroughly check the vice, and they found the gold,” a source said.

In a separate instance, officials also arrested a passenger flying in from Muscat, who attempted to smuggle in 358 grams of gold worth Rs 11.75 lakh. The man hid the yellow metal as 14 pieces in his trolley bag.

Officials found four very thin strips of gold painted in aluminium colour on the trolley bag’s handle and two black-painted gold buckles in the strap, besides eight thin straps of aluminium-painted gold strips fixed inside the bag’s metal casing.

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