New Delhi, Jul 17 (PTI) An inquiry has been initiated by the Delhi customs to find out as to how a married couple, arrested recently with a large number of hand guns, successfully smuggled into the country 25 guns in December last year via international airport here, an official said on Sunday.
The inquiry comes after the couple admitted before the customs officers that they were involved in smuggling 25 assorted guns from Turkey worth Rs 12.5 lakh, he said.
“An internal inquiry is being conducted to ascertain their claim and find out more details,” the officer said, requesting anonymity.
The customs officers had on Wednesday said that they have arrested the Gurugram-based married couple for allegedly smuggling into the country 45 hand guns, worth Rs 22.5 lakh, at the Indira Gandhi International (IGI) airport.
In a statement issued on Wednesday on the seizure, the customs department had said that “Both the passengers had admitted their previous indulgence in smuggling of 25 pieces of assorted guns from Turkey having approx(-imate) value of Rs 12,50,000”.
Following their admission, the customs officers have started verifying the information given by them.
“The couple claimed their involvement in smuggling in 25 guns in December last year. We will verify CCTV footage and flight details to find out more,” the customs officer said.
Meanwhile, the customs department has informed about the seizure of 45 guns from the couple to the National Investigation Agency (NIA), mandated to probe terror-related incidents.
The husband-and-wife duo have been arrested with Germany and Italy-made hand guns, he said.
The customs officials said efforts are on to nab another accused, who escaped from the Delhi airport after handing over two pieces of luggage containing guns to the couple.
The accused couple, who arrived here from Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City on Monday, were accompanied by their infant daughter.
Their child was handed over to her grandmother following the couple’s arrest.
The male passenger (husband) was carrying two trolley bags, which were handed to him by his elder brother who had arrived from Paris almost at the same time and day as the couple’s flight from Vietnam landed here, the officials said.
The elder brother, after handing over the trolley bags, slipped out of the airport, they said.
The officials said that investigation has revealed that the third accused, who is yet to be traced, has a few serious criminal cases registered against him including that under the Arms Act.
The customs department has sought a ballistic report to confirm whether the seized guns are real or not, they said.
However, a preliminary report has confirmed that the guns can be used after certain modifications, the officials added. PTI AKV SKL RCJ
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