Alert custom officials at the Kempegowda International Airport (KIA) on Sunday caught six passengers in two separate cases of smuggling and recovered over 10 kg of gold biscuits worth Rs 3.4 crore. One of the cases is said to be the largest haul in recent times.
A bag from a Singapore flight, containing a music system with gold concealed in them, caught the attention of the officials at the luggage scanner.
Finding a bag suspicious, officials marked it for further verification. They put the bag on the conveyor belt last to identify its owner. However, it remained unclaimed.
As the bag lay unattended, the ground staff were informed. Subsequently, the staff identified the owner through the baggage tag as Noorulayne, a Singapore national, and the officials detained him for further investigations.
On opening the suitcase, two cartons were found with audio speakers with black insulation tapes wound at their bottom. The gold biscuits were concealed within the tapes. With each biscuit weighing 100 gm and a total of 92 gold biscuits, 9.2 kg of gold worth Rs 3.02 crore was found, the officials said.
“This is one of the biggest hauls of gold seizure made by the Bangalore Airport Customs in the recent times. The Air Intelligence Unit based on inputs about possible movement of gold inside the country had stepped up the vigil,” said Harsh Vardhan Umre, Additional Commissioner of Customs.
In another case, Airport Customs officials seized gold weighing 1.16 kg worth
Rs 38.35 lakh from five passengers who arrived from Bahrain. The passengers, who are residents of Chennai, were intercepted by the officials after they scanned their checked-in baggage. Each passenger had concealed two gold biscuits each weighing 233.28 gm in adhesive tape and kept them in between their clothes in their luggage.