NIA arrests key conspirator in Kerala gold smuggling case

The National Investigation Agency (NIA) on Wednesday said that it has arrested Muhammed Mansoor P H who is alleged to be the ‘key conspirator in the gold smuggling case pertaining to the seizure of the huge amount of gold from a diplomatic cargo addressed to an embassy official in Kerala.

The probe agency officials said, Mansoor was arrested by the NIA upon his arrival at the Calicut International Airport from Dubai, United Arab Emirates.

The Ernakulam NIA Court had issued a non-bailable warrant of arrest against Mansoor. He was produced before a special court in Kochi and has been remanded in the agency custody for five days.

The case pertains to the seizure of 30 kg gold, worth Rs 14.82 crore, on July 5,last year at Air Cargo of Trivandrum International Airport by Customs (Preventive) Commissionerate, Cochin, from the baggage addressed to the Charge D’ Affaires of UAE Consulate, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.

The NIA had registered the case on July 10, 2020 and taken up the investigation. A charge sheet has already been filed in the case naming 20 accused persons in January this year, the officials further said.

They also said that the ongoing probe in the case revealed that Mohammed Mansoor, while being in the UAE, had conspired with the charge-sheeted accused Mohammed Shafi P and others to facilitate smuggling of gold to India, through import cargo addressed to diplomats at the UAE consulate in Thiruvananthapuram. Further investigation in this case has been under progress, the NIA added.

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