Sixteen months after her arrest in the sensational gold smuggling case, Swapna Suresh, one of the prime accused in the racket, walked out of jail here on Saturday after securing bail on November 2.
Suresh, who completed the necessary bail procedure, left for her residence with her mother, days after the Kerala High Court granted bail to her and seven others in a UAPA (Unlawful Activities Prevention Act) case lodged by the NIA in connection with the smuggling of gold through diplomatic channels. The court, while allowing her bail, had held that prima facie it did not find that the accused committed any terrorist act as alleged against them. Suresh was taken into custody by the National Investigation Agency (NIA) along with another accused Sandeep Nair from Bengaluru on July 11, 2020, also a Saturday.
Today, Suresh refused to talk to the media initially, but said she will respond later following which the television channels followed her to her residence in the city. However, her mother told the waiting media there her daughter was not feeling well as she just got released from the jail, and will not be talking to them today.
Earlier, after completing the official bail proceedings, Suresh left the “Vanitha” jail at Attakulangara here, where she had been lodged.
The court had granted bail to Suresh, a former employee of the UAE consulate here, subject to furnishing a bond of Rs 25 lakh with two solvent sureties each for the like amount.
The NIA, ED and Customs conducted separate investigations into the racket that was busted with the seizure of gold worth Rs 15 crore from the diplomatic baggage of the UAE Consulate at Thiruvananthapuram airport on July 5, 2020.
Several people, including M Sivasankar, the former Principal Secretary to the Kerala Chief Minister and another ex-employee of the UAE Consulate here, Sarith P S, were arrested in connection with the case.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Federal staff and is auto-published from a syndicated feed.)