The Customs on Thursday arrested suspended IAS officer M Sivasankar in the dollar smuggling case that came to light during the probe into the gold smuggling racket in Kerala in which he is also an accused.
The arrest of Sivasankar was recorded at a jail in Kochi, where he is lodged under judicial custody since his arrest by the Customs and the Enforcement Direcrorate in cases related to smuggling of gold through diplomatic channel, Customs sources said.
Hours earlier, the Customs secured permission of a court in Kochi to arrest the IAS officer in connection with the case related to alleged smuggling of USD 1,90,000 (equivalent to Rs 1.30 crore) by a former finance head of the UAE Consulate in Thiruvananthapuram to Muscat in Oman.
Prime accused in the gold smuggling case Swapna Suresh and Sarith PS are also allegedly involved in the dollar case and had already been arrested by the Customs.
Earlier, the Customs (Preventive) Commissionerate moved a plea in the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate’s (Economic Offences) Court in Ernakulam seeking its permission to arrest Sivasankar.
Sivasankar, former principal secretary to Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, was suspended after his links to Suresh, also a former employee of the consulate, surfaced.
The Customs on January 8 had recorded the statement of Kerala Assembly Speaker P Sreeramakrishnan’s assistant private secretary in connection with the dollar smuggling case.