A Court in Ernakulam on Wednesday refused bail to M Sivasankar, former Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister of Kerala, in the case registered by the Customs Department in relation to the diplomatic channel gold smuggling case.
The order was pronounced by the Economic Offences Court, Ernakulam.
Sivasankar is also facing another case registered by the Enforcement Directorate under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act alleging that he helped Swapna Suresh, the prime accused in the gold smuggling case, to launder the proceeds of the crime. He has been under custody in the ED case since October 28.
The lawyer of the civil servant(presently under suspension), Advocate S Rajeev, argued that Customs could not produce any material to show that Sivasankar aided or abetted other accused in smuggling gold using the diplomatic cargo.
On October 28, the High Court had dismissed Sivasankar’s anticipatory bail plea in the ED case observing that there were circumstances suggesting that he might be involved in money laundering with Swapna Suresh.
The case relates to the seizure of 30 kg of 24 carat gold worth ₹14.82 crore at Thiruvananthapuram airport on July 5 by the Customs (Preventive) Commissionerate, Kochi, which was sought to be brought through the diplomatic consignment sent to UAE consulate at the State capital.