AIU came across stunning ways passengers used to smuggle gold or diamonds.
In a bid to smuggle gold through airlines, passengers are forced to think ‘out of the box’ to give airport officials a slip with ease. And 2017 has been quite eventful as the Air Intelligence Unit (AIU) managed to seize Rs 107 crore (Dh60,562,995 approx) worth of gold being smuggled and arrested 178 Indians and 49 foreigners at Mumbai airport.
So, what is the most popular method that passengers adopted to sneak in gold? AIU officers found that the most popular method was passenger using connecting flights to smuggle the metal. In this, a passenger (carrier) who arrives from overseas, moves to the domestic section within the airport for another location, and, in between, hands over the gold to another passenger waiting there. Many times, airline crew members were also found involved, according to reports in Mid-Day.
Way too creative!
AIU came across stunning ways passengers used to smuggle gold or diamonds – hiding them in chocolate wrappers!
Recently, an Indian, Saleem Basha, was caught with diamonds worth Rs 6 crore (Dh3,396,055 approx) concealed in chocolate wrappers and mixed with chocolates. A new method was revealed when a Korean, Kim Youngjin, was found with 15 kg gold worth Rs 4 crore (Dh2,264,037 approx) concealed in specially made pockets in his jacket.
Another unique method officials stumbled across was that gold was being smuggled in the form of wires. A passenger, Kandathil Mohamed Rafi, was intercepted and a search of his checked-in baggage showed gold wires coated with copper weighing 587 gm, worth Rs17.32 lakh (Dh98,032 approx). The wires were stitched into embroidered fabrics.
Drugs seized too
Apart from gold, drugs smuggled in a special briefcase were also seized by AIU. A total of Rs9.43 crore (Dh5,337,467 approx) worth narcotics were seized in 2017.