Kerala gold racket may have Dawood link, says NIA

KOCHI: The National Investigation Agency, which is probing the terror angle in the gold smuggling case, submitted before the special court on Wednesday that it suspects a connection between the racket and Dawood’s D Company.
While opposing the bail plea of eight among the accused, the NIA said the 13th accused, Sharafuddeen, had gone to Tanzania with the fifth accused, KT Ramees. It submitted a photo of the accused holding a gun, reportedly taken in a market in Tanzania where guns are sold, as evidence.
“Even as smuggling operations continued, Ramees was caught by customs in November 2019 for smuggling 13 rifles (.22 bore). D Company has a presence in Tanzania and UAE and a South Indian named Firose is managing its affairs. We are probing the possibility of Ramees having a connection with the gang,” the NIA said.
The agency said that Ramees used to smuggle gold from Tanzania to UAE before smuggling it to India. In Tanzania, Ramees tried to procure a diamond merchant’s licence, NIA told the court. Opposing the bail plea, NIA claimed that one of the accused had links with Islamic State and SIMI. A newspaper clipping of IS members in Syria and a downloaded message about convicted persons in a SIMI case, retrieved from his mobile, was cited as the reason for the NIA’s suspicion. TNN

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