On Tuesday, The National Investigation Agency (NIA) investigating the Kerala gold smuggling case informs a special court in Kochi that two main suspects in the case, i.e, Faisal Fareed and Rabbins Hameed are in the custody of Dubai Police and blue corner notices are issued against four others.
NIA opposed the bail request of the accused and said that the case is in an important phase and providing bail to them at this point will affect the investigation. Although, the court has criticized the agency on Monday and seek evidence for the terrorist charges against the suspects. All the 30 accused of the case are charged under various sections of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA).
Gold smuggling case
Faisal Fareed, who allegedly sent 30 kilograms of gold as a consignment to the United Arab Emirates Consulate disguised as diplomatic baggage and was the third accused in the case filed by the NIA.
Two months earlier, NIA officials visited the UAE and questioned the accused in jail. An official said, Hameed also Played a key role in smuggling gold and reiterated that its charge that major portion of charges was related to the funding anti-national activities. Both the accused arrested in Dubai were also a part of hawala transactions.
Close relationships with former employees of Consulate
During the investigation, it also disclosed to the agency that more than 400 kilograms of gold was smuggled to the country using their close relationships with the former employees of the Consulate. P Sarith Kumar and Swapna Suresh, who are the former employees of the Consulate, are the first and second accused in the case. Faisal and Hameed allegedly arranged gold that was smuggled through a diplomatic channel.
UAPA imposed on the accused
This is the very first time when there is UAPA is used in a smuggling case. Some of the accused protested that this is only the case of economic offense and the UAPA can not be imposed on them and they were in the custody for more than three months. The court will take a look at the accused bail plea on Wednesday after examining the NIA reply.
Meanwhile, the Enforcement Directorate (ED) has questioned Bineesh Kodiyeri, son of CPI(M) state secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, fore more than six hours in its Bengaluru office suspecting a connection with the drug case. According to a senior officer, who is also a part of the investigation team, Bineesh Kodiyeri is yet to give a clean chit and will be summoned again after examining his statements.