Dawood Ibrahim, D Company Have Links to Kerala Gold Smuggling Case, Says NIA

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India's most wanted terrorist Dawood Ibrahim and his D Company may have links to the Kerala gold smuggling case, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) told a special court in Kochi. The agency said that the accused have visited Tanzania several times, where the underworld don has an extensive network.

"During the custodial interrogation of Ramees (A-5), he revealed that he had attempted to start diamond business in Tanzania. He had tried to obtain gold mining license in Tanzania. The accused also stated that he bought gold from Tanzania and sold them in UAE," the NIA said.

In September, sleuths of the NIA had claimed that the consignments of Holy Quran were brought to Kerala State Centre for Advanced Printing &Training (C-apt) office in Thiruvananthapuram before distribution at various places using its vehicles. Official sources said the NIA officials gathered information in detail from the C-apt officials on the Quran packets brought from the UAE consulate.

The smuggling came to fore when Customs (Preventive) Commissionerate, Kochi, seized 30 kg of gold worth Rs 14.82 crore found camouflaged in diplomatic baggage from the UAE on July 5.

The NIA said P Mohammed Shafi was the main organiser of smuggling along with fifth accused Rameez since November 2019 and had smuggled gold 21 times through diplomatic baggage of the UAE consulate, "with the intention of threatening the economic security of India."

Central agencies, including NIA, Customs and Enforcement Directorate, are conducting a separate probe into the seizure of the gold. Several persons, including two former employees of the UAE consulate in Thiruvananthapuram, Swapna Suresh and Sarith PS, were arrested by the central agencies in connection with the case.