Seven foreigners, including four women, have been arrested by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) officials for allegedly trying to smuggle out foreign currency worth over Rs 6 crore at the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) airport here.
They were intercepted when they were proceeding to board a flight to Hong Kong and their baggage was searched on Monday.
Later, the recovery of foreign currency was made from their checked-in baggage.
The forex was tightly wrapped in towels inside the luggage in a manner to escape detection by security and intelligence agencies at the airport, according to a statement issued by the DRI on Tuesday.
“All the currencies were in the denomination of USD 100. A total of around USD 8.9 lakh, having market value of Rs 6.14 crore, was seized,” it said.
Investigations reveal that the foreigners were part of an international syndicate involved in smuggling of foreign currencies. It had members in India and Hong Kong.
“The mastermind of the syndicate is sitting in the Hong Kong, who arranged carriers and sent them to India with gold bars through concealment. In India, a person used to collect the gold and give foreign currency in return which used to be smuggled out of India back to Hong Kong,” the DRI said.
It was further revealed in the investigations that the syndicate never repeated the carriers to avoid attention of the customs authorities in India, it said.
A father and his daughter were among the seven foreigners arrested by the DRI, officials said, adding that they all are natives of Taiwan.
Later, an Indian accomplice of this smuggling syndicate was also arrested by the DRI. “In all eight people, including seven foreigners, have been arrested in the case,” the officials said.