23 kg smuggled gold: Biggest haul this year

- Manish Gautam, KATHMANDU
23 kg smuggled gold: Biggest haul this year

Dec 17, 2014-

In the biggest haul this year, police confiscated 23 kg gold worth more than Rs 100 million from Jagati, Bhaktapur, from a fruit container around Monday midnight.

The 23 gold biscuits were being smuggled in a truck (Na 3 Kha 5058) headed for Kathmandu from Tatopani, Sindhupalchok, that the police intercepted at Jagati checkpoint.

The ‘Swiss 1 KG Fine Gold 999.9’ biscuits were hidden in a false bottom created on the window by the driver’s seat. Police held the driver and his helper—Buddhi Bahadur Shrestha, 23, and Anil Shrestha, 19. Raj Bahadur Karki, 32, who was travelling with them, was arrested too.

DSP Kiran Rana, chief of the Jagati Police Circle, said the truck, owned by Ghasyang Sherpa, 30, had left for Tatopani four days ago. “Since the apple container was sealed by revenue officials, they had concealed the gold near the driver’s door,” said DSP Rana.

The driver told the police that a Chinese national had asked him to deliver it to Koteshwor where a person from Bouddha would receive it. The three have been sent to the Department of Revenue Investigation.

In July last year, the Central Investigation Bureau of Nepal Police seized 35 kg gold from a truck in Koteshwor. The gold was being smuggled from Khasa, China, into Kathmandu. Recent big seizures include the arrest of a foreign national from Bhagwati Bahal, Naxal, on December 6 with 15kg gold.

Police data show 284 kg gold was seized in the past three years. Including Tuesday’s haul, 134 kilograms of the precious metal has been captured this year.

“Gold legally imported by Nepal Rastra Bank finds no buyers. Yet there is no shortage of it in the market. This shows smuggled gold caters to the demand,” said DIG Madhav Joshi.

Published: 17-12-2014 07:42

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