Jet Airways hostess arrested for smuggling USD 3.21 crore wrapped in foil
A Jet Airways air hostess was arrested with USD 3.21 crore wrapped in foil that she was trying to smuggle to Hong Kong. The 25-year-old air hostess has allegedly made seven trips to Hong Kong, carrying USD 10 lakh before she was caught by the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI) on Monday. The DRI officials found the whopping amount in her possession, wrapped in foil. Upon investigation, it has been revealed that she was working with an agent, Amit Malhotra, who is a resident of Delhi's Vivek Vihar.
"US Dollars valued at Rs. 3.21 crore recovered from a lady crew member of a Hong Kong-bound Jet Airways flight last night at the Indira Gandhi International airport," DRI said in a statement.
A senior DRI official mentioned that Malhotra had befriended the Jet Airways crew on a flight to India six months ago. The official mentioned that Malhotra was using crew members to smuggle forex. "Malhotra would collect money from some bullion dealers in Delhi and send it via some air hostess to select foreign destinations. The money was being used for purchasing gold abroad. The gold would then be sent to India illegally," the official said, according to agency reports.
The official further added that the DRI suspected some crew members of Jet Airways were part of this ploy. He mentioned that Malhotra has been smuggling forex for more than the past one year. They are trying to find out details of the bullion dealers involved in this syndicate, he mentioned.
The air hostess was caught around 3 am on Monday, after a DRI team entered the Hong Kong-bound flight from Delhi and checked her bags. After the money was found, she was ordered off the flight.
According to NDTV, Jet Airways confirmed the arrest and said that they would take actions according to the investigations and inputs from law enforcement agencies.
Amit Malhotra has been arrested as well and Rs 3 lakh in cash and USD 1,600 has been found at his home in Delhi.
(With agency inputs)