The Chennai Air Customs has seized 4.15 kg gold worth over Rs 2.17 crore at the airport here and arrested seven people after busting a smuggling racket, in which the passengers were found to have swallowed capsules of gold paste wrapped with polythene/rubber cover.
In a press release on Sunday, the Chennai Customs revealed that the passengers were intercepted at the exit by Air Intelligence Unit officers on suspicion of carrying gold after they had arrived from Dubai and Sharjah on January 22.
On questioning, the accused admitted to concealing gold paste capsules in the stomach and rectum. They informed that they had swallowed gold paste capsules before departure.
After a formal request to recover the capsules, the smugglers were admitted to Stanley Government hospital to recover the capsules under expert medical supervision. The customs said that it took eight days for the process to complete.
"Total 4.15 kilograms of gold valued at Rs 2.17 crore were seized under Customs Act from eight passengers. Seven arrested," the release said.
A total of 161 capsules weighing 2.88 kg and valued at Rs 1.28 crore were recovered from the stomach of all 8 passengers, the Customs department said.
"Further, 8 bundles containing 61 capsules weighing 18 kg gold and valued at Rs 51.36 lakhs were also recovered. In addition, 3 gold chains, 8 gold bits, 8 gold rings, 2 bundles of gold paste totally valued at Rs 30.64 lakhs were recovered from handbags and pant pockets," the release said.
( With inputs from ANI )
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