Kerala gold smuggling case: NIA nod to make accused an approver
The National Investigation Agency on Wednesday agreed to make Sandip Nair, one of the prime accused in the gold smuggling case, turn approver.
Nair made the plea in a Special NIA court at the end of his judicial custody, following which the court asked the NIA probe team to see that his statement was recorded under the relevant law.
Nair and another prime accused Swapna Suresh were on the run after the Customs arrested PS Sarith, a former employee of the UAE Consulate here, on July 5 when he was allegedly facilitating the smuggling of 30 kg gold in diplomatic baggage from Dubai to Thiruvananthapuram.
Swapna and Sarith worked at the UAE Consulate but left their jobs. They however continued to maintain close links with the Consulate affairs. After the names of Swapna and Nair cropped up in the gold smuggling case soon after Sarith's arrest, they fled from Kerala.
After the NIA took over the case, the two were arrested on July 11 from Bengaluru.
The latest development could lead to some anxious moments for Bineesh Kodiyeri, son of CPI-M Kerala Secretary Kodiyeri Balakrishnan, and Cabinet Minister EP Jayarajan's son who was reported to be close to Swapna.
Bineesh has been questioned for 11 hours by the Enforcement Directorate in the past and was expected to be called again for further quizzing.