Two passengers leaving to Dubai were arrested by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) at Rajiv Gandhi International Airport, Hyderabad on Monday, after they were caught smuggling foreign currency valued at Rs 1,48,75,000. The accused persons had concealed the illegal currency under the false bottom of Osmania biscuit and sweet boxes.
The accused cleverly tried to dodge the authorities by taking separate flights — one at 2.50 pm and another at 8.10 pm, leaving to Dubai. However, the authorities had a tip-off following which they detained the accused and after examination, they found 3,50,000 Saudi Arabian Riyals in possession of each of them, which is equivalent to Rs 74,37,500.
The DRI said that the passengers during interrogation confessed that they obtained the currency from unauthorised persons and were well aware of the crime and its implications.
“As the said Foreign Currency was obtained from unauthorized dealers/persons in violations of FEMA (Foreign Exchange Management Act), 1999 and regulations made there under and was attempted to be exported illegally, in contravention of the prohibition imposed under Customs Act 1962 read with FEMA, 1999, the said Foreign Currency, equivalent of Rs 1,48,75,000 was seized. Two passengers are arrested,” DRI said in a press release.
The DRI said that further investigation is underway.
In a similar crime in November last year, three passengers were arrested by the DRI from Hyderabad airport when they tried to smuggle $1,38,000 (approximately Rs one crore).
The accused tried to leave for Hong Kong with the foreign currency. However, they were intercepted by the DRI personnel, who found the foreign currency in their checked-in baggage. The accused were arrested.