Kolkata customs seizes USD worth Rs 9.34 crores from passenger flying to Dubai | Kolkata News – Times of India

KOLKATA: In a major breakthrough, the Kolkata Customs’ Air Intelligence Unit (AIU) have seized US foreign currency worth Rs 9.34 crores and have arrested the person who was carrying it.
Officials said this is one of the biggest seizures of foreign currency in the city in recent years and suspect the money could be meant to finance drugs, gold smuggling or be part of a hawala racket abroad.
Officials said this could be just the tip of a larger gang working in place.
Customs sources said the AIU team had been receiving intelligence that a big syndicate is actively involved in smuggling foreign currency on a regular basis. Based on specific intelligence and profiling of passengers, the AIU on Thursday intercepted the middle aged man while he was about to board a flight to Dubai.
The man had concealed the cash inside two trolleys while covering them up with clothes and had put it with the airlines in the checked-in-baggage. During screening, CISF officials doubted the contents inside the bags and raised an alarm while informing CISF officials, who immediately intercepted the person for questioning.
“The person had failed to explain the source of so much foreign currency and was apprehended under provisions of the Customs Act,” said an official.
In May this year, four persons were held at Mumbai airport with foreign currency worth 15 crores before they could board an international flight. Customs officers are checking if the men behind the two cash hauls are anyway related.
Current Indian law permits one to carry foreign exchange up to US $ 2,000, in the form of foreign currency notes or travellers’ cheques (TCs) for future use. In this case, the man had with him USD 11.87 lakhs that amounted to Rs 9.34 crores.