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Kenyan passenger used oxygen cylinder on ‘sick’ infant to smuggle Sh54 million gold to India

A Kenyan passenger traveling from Nairobi was on Tuesday, March 7, 2023, arrested in India after he faked sickness on an infant with the aim of smuggling Sh54 million gold.

The Kenyan whose identity is yet to be made public allegedly arrived at Indira Gandhi International (IGI) Airport while carrying a portable oxygen concentrator and had attached the mask to the infant’s face.

“He pretended that the baby was critically ill and needed an oxygen supply. However, the customs team detected the gold in the oxygen concentrator. On personal search, seven bars of gold, weighing around 7kg, were recovered. The passenger has been placed under arrest,” Indian media reported.

This is not the first time a passenger traveling between Kenya and India has been nabbed while in possession of gold.

On February 13, 2023, two Kenya Airways (KQ) flight crew were arrested in India for allegedly being in possession of concealed gold.

The two were nabbed at the Mumbai Airport and they alerted their Kenyan counterparts on the matter.

The suspected national carrier crew were arrested when their respective flights landed at Mumbai airport.

It is also not clear whether the security officers acted on a tip but investigations have been launched, according to Kenyan authorities aware of the development.

The crews are reported to have departed from Nairobi’s Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) Nairobi aboard separate flights and were found in possession of the precious metal without prior declaration.

This led to airport officials introducing new rules targeting airlines following the nabbing of the two with 18 kilograms of gold which has a street value of Sh133 million.

Officials said it has been agreed that all crew members from all airlines remain a high risk and their baggage/handheld luggage must be scanned.

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