June 05, Colombo: A French national who tried to illegally bring a stock of gold worth over Rs. 85 million has been arrested on Saturday (June 03) at the Bandaranaike International Airport in Colombo.
Acting Customs Media Spokesman, Customs Director Sivali Arukgoda said the Frenchman was by the officials of Gems and Jewelry Appraisal Division and Narcotics Control Division of Sri Lanka Customs with a stock of gold weighing 4.611 kg grams and estimated to be worth Rs. 85,310,900.
The 35-year-old Frenchman had visited Sri Lanka on several occasions before, and this time, he had arrived at Katunayake Airport on SriLankan Airlines flight UL-501 from Paris.
The Customs officers considering that he was only coming to Sri Lanka for a period of 24 hours, inspected his luggage and found the concealed stock of gold and arrested the passenger.
The customs officers found several gold necklaces in his luggage, as well as a stock of gold bars coated with black paint in such a way that it is difficult to find them at first glance.
The formal customs investigation was conducted by the Senior Deputy Director of Customs Mr. S. Sivagnanam, where the gold stock was confiscated and the Frenchman was also ordered to pay a fine of Rs. 70 million.
As the Frenchman was unable to pay the fine, he has been presented by the Customs officers to Negombo Acting Mr. Indika De Silva.
The Magistrate has ordered the French national to be remanded until the 8th June.