NIA to probe Kerala gold seizure case

12:12 AM Jul 10, 2020 | FPJ Bureau
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The Ministry of Home Affairs on Thursday transferred the Kerala gold smuggling case to the National Investigation Agency (NIA), citing “serious implications for national security”. The case pertains to the seizure of 30 kilogram of smuggled gold from a diplomatic cargo addressed to the UAE Consulate-General Office in Thiruvananthapuram last Sunday.

Transferring the investigation into the case to the NIA, the Home Ministry said, “the organised smuggling operation may have serious implications for national security.”

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The decision came a day after Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi seeking his "intervention for an effective investigation" into the seizure.Meanwhile, Swapna Suresh, accused in the controversial gold smuggling case, who is on the run since last Saturday, has filed for anticipatory bail in the Kerala High Court. A former employee at the UAE Consulate, Swapna, who was also a marketing officer working on contract for one of the firms linked to the Kerala government's Information Technology department, is among those who staked claim to the baggage, said customs sources.The court will hear the plea on Friday. In her petition, she claimed that she was innocent and had done no wrong, and the media were levelling baseless allegations against her.

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She further stated that she had the necessary credentials to act to clear the baggage as she was asked by the officials in the UAE Consulate to do so.

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