India

Massive gold-smuggling ring busted- 2,000kg imported illegally

22 May 2017 | By Gogona Saikia
Gold-smuggling ring worth Rs. 600cr busted

In what may be the country's biggest gold smuggling racket, the accused is suspected to have imported about 2,000kg of gold, worth Rs. 600cr, illegally.

The latest development in the case came on May 21, when the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) seized 52kg of gold worth Rs. 15cr from Gujarat's Mundra port.

The kingpin, Delhi-based businessman Harnek Singh, was arrested last weekend.

In context: Gold-smuggling ring worth Rs. 600cr busted

22 May 2017Massive gold-smuggling ring busted- 2,000kg imported illegally

DetailsSingh invested the money in luxury cars and apartments

On May 13, the DRI seized 44kg of gold from the same port at Mundra. After that, "we alerted the ports across the country since we had the information that Singh's consignments are on the way".

More seizures are expected.

Meanwhile, Singh has been arrested. He invested the money in three big apartments, a fleet of 11 luxury cars including Porsche and BMWs, and more.

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Modus Operandi- Smugglers used the sea route

MOModus Operandi- Smugglers used the sea route

Instead of flights, Singh went the 1970s way - he smuggled gold on merchant vessels.

His Dubai-based brother-in-law would send over the items inside the metallic case of incubators, which would be shipped along with other devices (he owns a factory that manufactures apparatus for poultry farms).

Money would be routed through the hawala network, leaving no paper trail.

DRIWill recover duties on 2,000kg of gold smuggled: DRI

In the last two years, about 300kg of gold has been smuggled into the country, divided over at least 24 shipments.

"We will book him under COFEPOSA (the Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act). We will also ensure that duty on 2,000kg gold is recovered," said a DRI official.