Swapna Suresh (L) and Sandeep Nair
Kerala gold smuggling case accused Swapna Suresh (L) and Sandeep Nair (R) detained by National Investigation Agency from Bengaluru on Saturday. Image Credit: ANI

Kochi: Swapna Suresh and Sandeep Nair, two prime accused in the high-profile Kerala gold smuggling case, were sent to judicial custody till August 21 by a Kochi court on Saturday.

Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate (Economic Offences) Court remanded Suresh and Nair to judicial custody after they were physically produced before the court on the completion of their custody to the Customs department.

The two accused will undergo antigen test for COVID-19 and will be shifted to Ernakulam district jail.

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While granting custody to the Customs department, the Kochi court had observed that the accused are yet to be identified by the crucial witnesses and that the statements of some high profile persons are being recorded by the customs and the National Investigation Agency (NIA).

The NIA, which is also probing the high-profile case related to the gold smuggling in the state through diplomatic channels, had earlier taken Suresh, Nair and Sarith PS to various places in Thiruvananthapuram including their residences and a flat near the Secretariat for collecting evidence.

The matter had come to light after 30 kg gold worth Rs 14.82 crores, smuggled in a consignment camouflaged as diplomatic baggage, was busted by customs in Thiruvananthapuram. The case is being probed by the NIA.