It was an extra busy week for custom officials at the Bengaluru airport. Personnel at the Kempegowda International Airport were successful in making multiple large-scale seizures of illegal gold which was smuggled into the country.
In total four persons were arrested in cases related to gold smuggling just last week, reported The Times of India.
But what made the interceptions interesting was the manner in which the offenders tried to defy the law, like a South Korean national who attempted to escape scrutiny from custom officials by wrapping 50 confectionaries with thin foil of the precious metal. In total, the gold amounted to 514 grams worth Rs 15.98 lakh.
But 43-year-old Hyunho Jung who came to the city from Hong Kong was not the only one to try his luck by using pure gold foil to hoodwink authorities. On July 20, officials at the Bengaluru airport nabbed a Kerala man suspected to be a mule when he tried to pull off a similar stunt.
Rauf Kattakal, who was travelling to Bengaluru from Bahrain, was caught in the act after he was screened following passenger profiling by the Air Intelligence Unit (AIU) of Bengaluru Customs.
Investigations revealed that he was carrying 50 chocolates and chewing gums wrapped in pure gold which had been beaten into foil and cut into small pieces. The total gold in that seizure amounted to 384 grams worth Rs 11.83 lakh.
But this was not all. In a separate incident, Deccan Herald reported that a man from Kerala, Saifullah Shaik, was caught with 875 grams of gold worth Rs 27 lakh, which he had hidden in a foot pump. When officials were scanning his check-in luggage, they found dark X-Ray images which led them to manually inspect his belongings.
Another man from the same neighbouring state was caught with Rs 9.85 lakh worth of gold in the form of paste in a chemical and mud mixture.
In the previous financial year, it was reported that a total of 100 kg of gold worth Rs 30 crore was seized from the airport.