Big haul this New Year for customs dept

Bison horns and camel teeth being smuggled to different countries.

Bengaluru: The New Year seems to have started on a good note for the custom officials at the Kempegowda International Airport, Bengaluru, who detected four different cases in first four days of the year.

The officials have made seizure of drugs worth Rs 1 crore, gold worth Rs 15 lakh besides seizing bison horns and camel teeth being smuggled to different countries. The airport courier and customs intelligence unit seized 11.16 kg of narcotics drugs - Ketamine, worth Rs 1 crore on January 2 which was being smuggled to Kuala Lampur, Malaysia.

The exporter had declared the consignment as ‘assorted Indian sweets’. The consignment was found to contain 17 boxes with name “Shree Mithai” printed on each one of them.

While scanning the consignment Customs Officers at the Airport Courier section grew suspicious. When it was taken up for physical examination, it was seen that out of total 17 boxes, 11 were contained silvery grey coloured packet, where a smaller packet was concealed inside the bigger one. In between two packets, a brownish red coloured powder, which appeared like chilli powder was found smeared.

Once the inner packet was examined it had white crystalline substance powder. The powder was subjected to testing which revealed that it was Ketamine, custom officials said. Modus operandi

According to custom officials, the export cargo was booked by the exporter through Fedex couriers from Chennai, which was brought to the Bengaluru hub for shipment to Kuala Lampur. In order to prevent detection of drugs, the exporter had sprinkled red chilli powder on the outside packet.

The customs team is investigating the case and they would also summon Fedex Managers of Chennai as well as Bengaluru.

In another case on January 1, the customs sleuths thwarted an attempt of smuggling gold into the country, by detaining a passenger Shamil Ahmed, a resident of Bhatkal, who arrived from Dubai.

The passenger had tried to conceal gold, minted in various shapes enabling their concealment in different objects to avoid detection by customs. The passenger after being profiled and on detailed examination of the hand baggage and his check-in baggage, it was found that the passenger has concealed gold in form of rivets of suitcases, metal frame of purse and also in gold in form of embroidery work in Burkha, along with two gold bracelets, concealed in a wedding saree.

The assorted pieces of metal concealed in his baggage weighed 498 grams and was found to be made up of gold having 999.9 purity valued at Rs 15,13,422 in the International market.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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