Got involved in gold smuggling to help Sarith overcome financial crisis: Swapna

Kochi: Gold smuggling case accused Swapna Suresh has claimed that she got involved in the illegal activity to help another accused P S Sarith to overcome a financial crisis.

Swapna made the revelation during an interrogation by the Customs Preventive wing officers in the 30kg gold smuggling case.

As per the information received by Customs, it was accused Sandeep Nair's idea to smuggle gold via diplomatic baggage. However, the Customs suspect that another party advised Sandeep about such a fool-proof method.

The interrogation of Swapna and Sandeep will continue on Thursday.

The Customs secured the custody of ten accused on Tuesday. Among the 10, Jalal Mohammed, Amjed Ali, and Muhammed Abdu Shameem were questioned and presented before the economics offences court. They were then sent to the district jail.

The questioning of all the other accused in custody is under way. Their custody period ends at 5pm on Thursday.

The Customs is mainly checking the discrepancies in the earlier statements of the accused except Sandeep and Swapna.

Meanwhile, the Customs Preventive wing has issued a notice to air cargo association leader Hariraj, asking him to appear before the officials on Thursday. Hariraj was questioned once earlier.

The Customs had seized 30kg gold from a diplomatic baggage addressed to the UAE Consulate in Thiruvananthapuram on July 5. In the subsequent investigation, the role of P S Sarith and Swapna Suresh, former Consulate employees, was revealed. While Sarith was arrested by the Customs, Swapna and Sandeep Nair were nabbed from Bengaluru by the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

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