Kerala Left MLA’s name surfaces in gold smuggling case

South India
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The report says the MLA was a key link in the smuggling ring and supports the claim with the statements of witnesses.

The high profile Kerala gold smuggling case has taken a new turn on Monday, October 26, with a witness in the case revealing the connection of a ruling front MLA with the gold smuggled through diplomatic channels.

The allegation made by Soumya BS, wife of accused Sandeep Nair, is contained in a report Customs department has submitted to the Union Finance Ministry along with an application to invoke ‘COFEPOSA’ (Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act) against the main accused, Swapna Suresh and Sandeep Nair.

She gave a statement against Karat Razak, an LDF-backed independent MLA from Koduvally and Karat Faisal, an LDF-backed independent Councillor of Koduvally Municipality.

In that report, Customs stated, "She also knew that Sandeep and Ramees, another accused in the case, were smuggling gold for Karat Faisal and Karat Rasak." "Sandeep used to physically assault her since she objected Sandeep getting involved in the smuggling.

The report says the MLA was a key link in the smuggling ring and supports the claim with the statements of witnesses. The role of the MLA is also mentioned in the details of the communication between the accused as part of the gold smuggling. But at no point during the gold smuggling operations did Swapna and the MLA interact directly. They communicated through Ramees, who is yet to reveal the role of the MLA.

Investigating officials say that Ramees destroyed one of his mobile phones a day after (July 2) information came out that a diplomatic parcel containing gold had been detained by the Customs department at the Thiruvananthapuram Airport.

Ramees got calls on this phone from Anoop Mohammad, an accused in the Bengaluru drugs case. This SIM card is registered in the name of a Tamil Nadu native.

The MLA, who has not been named as an accused or witness in the case, has denied the allegation.  He termed it as politically motivated. .

The MLA's connections with the accused is mentioned on page 5 of the confidential report with the file number ‘PD12002–06–2020 COFEPOSA’. It says K.T. Ramees is the mastermind of the gold smuggling operations.

Image Credit: Onmanorma

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