Smuggling of gold: Chennai airport officer & four others held.
CHENNAI: Officials of the the directorate of revenue intelligence (DRI) busted a gold smuggling syndicate at the Chennai international airport on Saturday and arrested five people, including a senior customs officer. Though the names of the officer and the other accused have not been revealed, sources said the officer was of the rank of a superintendent. The crackdown led to a seizure of 23kg of gold worth 7.825 crore. In a communication issued on Sunday, DRI said that on Saturday they apprehended four passengers, who had arrived at Anna International Airport from Singapore and Malaysia, with 12.95kg of gold bars. The delinquent officer, who was waiting to receive the gold from them on behalf of a Chennai receiver, and who was planning to allow the passengers go undetected, was also apprehended. The DRI’s follow-up search at the receiver’s residence and that of a near-relative resulted in seizure of further 10.2kg of smuggled gold and 24.43 lakh in cash. Later, while searching a grey-market shop owned by the receiver, officers of DRI recovered 48 drones (restricted for import) valued at about Rs 23 lakhs, and several high-end cameras and accessories. The passengers intercepted at the airport were also carrying high-value cameras and accessories.