Investigating officer in ED case transferred

P. Radhakrishnan, the investigation officer (IO) who was been heading the Enforcement Directorate (ED) probe into the alleged money laundering angle in the diplomatic baggage gold smuggling case, has been transferred to Chennai.

He had been leading the probe ever since ED registered the case in the alleged gold smuggling incident in July 2020. The transfer of the deputy director comes at a time when an ED petition to transfer the case to Karnataka was pending before the Supreme Court. Besides, the officer was looking into the latest revelations of Swapna Suresh, the accused in the diplomatic baggage gold smuggling case, against prominent personalities including the Chief Minister and his family.

Reportedly, the officer’s transfer has been in the air for nearly a year but had been getting delayed due to the ongoing investigation. However, informed sources said that the transfer comes at a time when investigation was making far greater progress than what was known to the public.

State Crime Branch had registered two cases against the IO based on the statements of women police constables that they had overheard the ED officials coercing Swapna to give statements implicating the Chief Minister and others. The FIR and further proceedings in the case were later quashed by the High Court.

After a gap, the case sprang back to life after Swapna gave a statement under Section 164 of CrPC before a magistrate court and levelled serious allegations against Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan, his family members and senior civil service officers. The CM's office had summarily rejected the charges. Later, the ED was granted a copy of this 164-statement and the investigation in this regard was progressing.

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Printable version | Aug 13, 2022 6:52:55 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Kochi/investigating-officer-in-ed-case-transferred/article65765302.ece