Kerala Gold Smuggling Case: Custom Department planned to move the Kerala HC against State Jail Dept

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The Custom has issued a directive to the Jail department stating that it should be informed about anyone visiting her and a customs official will accompany the visitors. The Customs department is planning to move to the Kerala High Court against the state jail department’s decision of not allowing the custom’s official along with visitors who want to meet the prime accused Swapna Suresh in the Kerala Smuggling Case, under Cofeposa (Conservation of Foreign Exchange and Prevention of Smuggling Activities Act).

The Customs official has said that they fear that it is an attempt to weaken a high-profile case when the jail department had refused and sent back a custom official last week who accompanied the relative of the accused to the jail. As per the state chief Rishiraj Singh, such a move will set a new precedent and demoralize jail officials.

A senior official said,

We have already informed the Cofeposa board about this. We will move to the High Court next week. She had already complained that she was facing serious threats and some people met her in  jail and forced her to change her statement.”

As per the custom officials, the state police and the jail official were not fully cooperating with the probe, if the situation will continue like this the department may move the apex court to shift the case to other states. They also said that the jail department maintained that normal jail procedures and laws applied to Cofeposa detainees also and officials can’t be allowed with visitors every time.

In the first week of December, the accused had told a court dealing with economic offences in Kochi that her life is in danger and she also sought special protection in jail and for her family members too.  As per the accused, she was under pressure to not take big names as some people met her in jail for pressurizing her regarding the same. The court later directed the prison’s department to provide enough security for her in jail.


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