Kerala Gold Scam: 8-Day Custody For Swapna Suresh, Sandeep Nair

They were taken into custody by the NIA in Bengaluru on Saturday.

Updated
India
2 min read
Swapna Suresh, the key suspect in the Thiruvananthapuram gold smuggling case, was taken into custody by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) in Bengaluru.
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A special National Investigation Agency (NIA) court in Kochi on Monday, 13 July, sent Swapna Suresh and Sandeep Nair, accused in the Thiruvananthapuram gold scandal case, to eight-day NIA custody, ANI reported.

Suresh and Nair, the key suspects in the case, were taken into custody by the NIA in Bengaluru on Saturday.

According to ANI, the NIA submitted in court that the accused forged the seal and emblem of UAE Embassy to commit the crime and that the smuggled gold was used not for jewellery but for terror activities.

Suresh, who has been absconding ever since her name cropped up in the case, had applied for anticipatory bail on 6 July.

Her bail plea reportedly accused the UAE Consulate officer for involving her in the retrieval of consular baggage, that had 30 kg gold worth Rs 14.82 crores.

In the bail petition, Swapna claimed she had no role in the crime and that she only made a phone call to the Assistant Commissioner of the Customs on the direction on the acting Consular General of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Consulate in Thiruvananthapuram, Rashed Khasmi Ali Musaiqri Al Ashmia, The News Minute reported.

A former employee of the UAE Consulate in Thiruvananthapuram, Swapna had worked as the Executive Secretary from 2016 and 2019 at the Consulate.

She had later joined as the contract staff of Pricewaterhousecoopers Ltd (PWC), a private company, for their Space Park Project under the Kerala government’s Information Technology Department.

According to the anticipatory bail plea, Swapna had resigned from the Consulate in September 2019, but she had been working with the Consulate on “work on request basis”.

She was removed from the post on Monday after her alleged link to the case surfaced.

Along with Suresh, former IT and Principal Secretary to Kerala Chief Minister, M Sivasankar; former staff of the UAE Consulate, PR Sarith; Sandeep Nari and Hariraj, member of the Air Cargo Association of India are also alleged to be involved in the case. Sivasankar is allegedly connected to Swapna Suresh.

(With inputs from The News Minute.)

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