Another attempt to smuggle a stock of gold gel worth over Rs.160 million by five local traders concealed in their baggage bound for India was thwarted by the Sri Lanka Customs stationed at the Bandaranaike International Airport (BIA) this afternoon.
Customs Narcotic Control Unit officials at the BIA Departure Terminal on a tip off searched five male passengers who were about to travel to Chennai on Indigo Airlines flight 6E 1171 at 1.55pm yesterday and seized the contraband.
The officials found 23 plastic capsules containing a gel-like solution mixed with gold dust and ten sachet packets containing the gold dust, overall weighing up to 8,637grams (8.6Kgs) concealed in their clothes in the baggage.
An official attached to the Customs Narcotic Control Unit told the Daily Mirror the suspects had been identified as residents from Negombo aged between 30 to 55 years. They were reportedly engaged in the trade of importing ready-made garments from South India.
This was reported as the fourth gold gel smuggling attempt thwarted by the Customs at the BIA in the last three weeks. The contraband will be sent to the Industrial Technology Institute (ITI) to determine the exact quantity of gold dust mixed in a gel-like solution.
The suspects were to be produced before the Negombo Magistrate’s Court last evening prior to the Customs inquiry pending the ITI test results