ED attaches assets worth Rs 1.84 crore in Kerala gold smuggling case

Kerala gold smuggling case accused Swapna Suresh and Sandeep Nair (both in middle) after they were arrested by the National Investigation Agency in Bengaluru. Photo: PTI

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has provisionally attached movable and immovable properties worth Rs 1.84 crore under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) in a gold smuggling case in Kerala.

In a statement, the ED said the attached immovable properties include a residential house, an apartment and a piece of land in Kozhikode. The attached moveable properties are in the form of fixed deposit held in Kozhikode branch of the Federal Bank.

The ED initiated investigation in a gold smuggling case on the basis of an FIR and chargesheet filed by the CBI and the Anti Corruption Bureau, Cochin against C Madhavan, a former deputy commissioner of customs, P P Sunil Kumar, Faiz T K, Ashraf Kallunkal, Subair Y M and Abdul Rahim and others.

The probe was carried out after two women - Arifa Haris and Asifa Veera - were apprehended by customs authorities and 20 kgs of gold was allegedly recovered from them on March 19,2013.

The two women had allegedly illegally carried 56 kgs of gold from Dubai to Cochin during August - September, 2013, the ED claimed.

These gold consignments were allegedly sent by one Faiz T K using his contacts with customs officers allegedly for one Ashraf Kallunkal, who is a prominent businessman of Kerala, the ED claimed.

According to the CBI chargesheet, the smuggling of gold worth Rs 17.86 crore led to the loss of Rs1.83 crore (10 per cent customs duty and 3 per cent cess) to the exchequer.

The money trail investigation carried out by ED revealed that Faiz and Kallunkal were allegedly the "masterminds" of the gold smuggling, the ED claimed.

Faiz allegedly picked the women carriers staying in Dubai with their family, who were in need of money and executed the smuggling.

Accused Kallunkal was the "main investor" in the gold purchase and allegedly smuggled the consignment to India with the help of Faiz, who has good relationship with many prominent people in Kerala, the ED claimed.

The agency said Kallunkal and Faiz had allegedly accumulated the profit in Dubai and later transferred the same to their accounts in India. The proceeds of the alleged crime were placed in the form of immovable and movable properties, the ED said.

The identified proceeds of the alleged crime in the form of the immovable properties valued at Rs 98.85 lakh and one FD valued at Rs 85,15,230, which totalling to Rs 1.84 crore have been attached under the PMLA, the ED said, adding further investigation is on.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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