The Customs Department in Kerala reported the arrest of two more people in the sensational gold smuggling case that has surfaced in the state. The accused who were arrested were allegedly involved in investing money for the smuggled gold.
Authorities said that the arrest of Malappuram natives, Aboobacker and Abdul Hameed, was recorded on Friday. With this, a total of 11 people, including key accused -- Sarith Kumar, Swapna Suresh and Sandeep Nair -- have been nabbed in connection with the gold smuggling case.
The case pertains to the seizure of 30 kg of gold from the United Arab Emirates (UAE) at the Thiruvananthapuram airport, in a supposed consular bag.
Among the others arrested, three are alleged to be involved in distributing the gold, while four others, including the two arrested on Friday, were allegedly involved in investing in the gold.
Read: Gold smuggling case: Kerala top bureaucrat M Sivasankar finally suspended
Meanwhile, Customs officials continued raids in connection with the case. On Friday, a raid was held in Faisal Fareedâ€™s house in Thrissur. Faisal is named as the third accused in the case and is yet to be nabbed. He is believed to be in Dubai. The house which had been locked for over a year, was opened by Customs officials and a search is ongoing.
The National Investigation Agency (NIA) which is also probing the case, said earlier that the smuggled gold could be used for funding terrorism in the country, and has appeared in court asking to get custody of first accused Sarith who is presently under Customs custody.
Sarith was presented before the NIA court in Kochi on Friday and was let under NIA custody for seven days. The other two key accused, Swapna and Sandeep, are already in NIA custody.
In another related development on Friday, the gunman of a UAE Consular Officer who left the country, reportedly tried to kill himself and is presently under treatment in a Thiruvananthapuram hospital. The UAE Consular Officer, in whose address the supposed consular bag containing the smuggled gold was found, had returned back to his home country recently.
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Watch guman of UAE Consular Officer being rescued by police: