DRI Directorate of Revenue Intelligence officers in Mangalore have arrested two employees of Spicejet aircraft on the charge of gold smuggling.
DRI staff seized 22 pieces of Gold biscuit bars of foreign origin weighing 2,566.05 grams worth Rs. 75.26 lakh from a Spicejet aircraft which landed at Mangalore International Airport from Dubai via Mumbai. “The two employees of Spicejet working at Mangalore International Airport were part of the conspiracy and were helping smugglers in retrieving the gold biscuits from the aircraft upon its landing at Mangalore” the press release of Vinayak Bhat, DRI Deputy Director, Mangalore said.
The gold biscuits sourced from Dubai were concealed in the aircraft during its international run from Dubai to Mumbai by a carrier hired for the job. Thereafter, once the aircraft was deployed on its assignment in the domestic sector, it operated between Mumbai and Mangalore. “It was here that the arrested Spicejet Employees, who were passing on advance information to the smugglers regarding the itinerary of the aircraft, were found indulging in retrieving the concealed gold biscuits from the aircraft and delivering them outside later thus, misusing their position to smuggle gold out of the airport by avoiding customs check all along” the release said. The two employees confessed to their crime on interrogation and admitted that they were doing it for the lure of hefty money offered by the smugglers. They also admitted that they had done it on six occasions earlier, the release said. Meanwhile, Spicejet said in a statement that it has suspended the two employees in this connection. It gave their names as O. A. Muddaiah, Security Officer and Mohammed Anif, Senior CSE, Airport Services.