Group accused of smuggling gold in airplane toilet

11C1P

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https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/worl...in-airplane-toilet/ar-BBIuBTI?li=BBnb7Kz&ocid

Police have arrested six people in connection to an elaborate plot to smuggle gold into Japan to avoid paying taxes.

The six suspects were taken into custody after five gold bars worth about 22.8 million yen ($209,000) were discovered under a panel at the back of a toilet in a plane bathroom.

Authorities believe the scheme had many parts. The first involved one man bringing the gold bars onto a Japan Airlines flight in Taiwan that was heading to Chubu Airport in Japan. He is believed to have hidden the gold bars in the plane bathroom.

The same Japan Airlines plane was scheduled to be used for a domestic trip to Tokyo’s Haneda Airport from Chubu Airport, Asahi news reports.

The scheme allegedly involved another member of the group boarding the plane when it landed at Chubu Airport, where he would retrieve the gold bars and then carry them off the plane in Tokyo.

The plan was cooked up to avoid customs — since passengers on domestic flights don’t have to go through customs — and therefore get out of paying 1.82 million yen ($16,725) in taxes.

However, the group did not make it to the final step of their plan. Customs officers discovered the gold bars in the toilet before the plane took off for Tokyo, Asahi reports.

The six allegedly involved in hatching and carrying out the plan were taken into custody, except for the person on the domestic flight, who was not charged.

The ring leader is thought to be Muhammed Rafieque Muhammed Rezane of Sri Lanka, who lives in Japan.

Those arrested have been accused of violating the customs Law and attempting to dodge consumption tax payments. Police have not reported whether the individuals have pleaded guilty or not guilty to the charges.

Police are concerned this is part of a larger gold smuggling ring throughout the country.
 

pmbug

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It really doesn't seem to make much sense to me. So much work and so many people involved with so much risk just to avoid $16K in customs/taxes? I'm guessing there is a lot more to this story.
 

rblong2us

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Im guessing the feds were acting on information cos they wouldn't normally search a plane between flights ?

But as you say it seems rather risky for the potential gain.
Things go wrong with planes, flights get delayed, rescheduled .....

Who even has access to the data as to which actual plane goes where and when ?
 

11C1P

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It really doesn't seem to make much sense to me. So much work and so many people involved with so much risk just to avoid $16K in customs/taxes? I'm guessing there is a lot more to this story.
Same thing I was thinking. The more people involved the less payout per person, and the more likely someone leaks out info. I can only guess that this might have been a test run to hopefully bring in larger amounts, and/or do it on multiple planes. The reward vs. risk ratio seemed out of balance for sure in the one example given.
 
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