A staffer working with Jet Airways at the Mangaluru International Airport, was arrested on Tuesday for allegedly smuggling gold.
The staffer, Lalbin Jeen, was arrested by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI), based on a tip-off they received that gold was being smuggled from aircrafts flying down from Dubai.
On Tuesday, the officials kept a close eye on the accused and caught him red-handed after he emerged with gold bars from the rear toilets of an aircraft. Jeen had boarded the aircraft that flew in from Dubai, on the pretext of carrying out maintenance work.
When the DRI officials intercepted him after he alighted from the aircraft, Jeen reportedly confessed to the crime.
Jeen then handed over two packets from the back pocket of his trousers, which contained 5 tola bars of gold. According to official estimates, the recovered gold weighs 1166.5g and has a market value of Rs 34.41 lakh.
According to the plan, Jeen was to hand over the gold bars to the agents of the smugglers at a designated spot in the city, and receive Rs 20,000 in return.
Lalbin Jeen was produced before the Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mangalore and has been remanded in judicial custody.
Further investigation is in progress based on the leads provided by him, said officials.
Meanwhile, in an official statement, Jet Airways said that it has suspended Jeen immediately, pending inquiry.
"The airline has zero tolerance towards any action of its employees wherein integrity has been compromised leading to a loss of confidence. In this case, the matter has been handed over to the law enforcement agency and a full-fledged investigation is underway. Jet Airways is fully cooperating with the authorities. Jet Airways has immediately suspended the services of the employee concerned, pending enquiry and will take further action as per policy, in accordance with law, based on the outcome of the investigation," the airlines said in a statement.