Court issues non-bailable warrant against Egyptian

Smuggling of U.S. Dollar worth ₹1.30 crore to Muscat

A non-bailable warrant for the extradition of Khaled Mohamed Ali Shoukry, an Egyptian native and former finance head of the UAE Consulate, Thiruvananthapuram, was issued by a trial court here on Wednesday.

It was on a plea from the Cochin Customs that C. Deepu, the Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, who is also the presiding officer of the Economic Offences Court, Ernakulam, issued the order.

The Customs case is that Shoukry had taken out U.S. Dollars worth around ₹1.30 crore to Muscat from Thiruvananthapuram International Airport by concealing the currencies inside his handbag. Swapna Suresh and P.S. Sarith, the two other accused in the case, escorted him to Muscat to ensure hassle-free clearances and security check, according to the Customs.

Shoukry was arraigned as the third accused in the case.

The court accepted the contention of the Customs that Shoukry was not a diplomatic agent and he was not entitled to any diplomatic immunities or privileges in accordance with the Vienna Convention.

The court had considered his employment conditions, which stated that he shall be subject to the fiscal, social security and Exchange Control Regulations of India. The court also took note of an order issued by the Ministry of External Affairs in 2017, which stated that he and his family members would not enjoy any privileges or immunities.

The court noted that the offence alleged against the accused was punishable with imprisonment up to seven years and fine. The offence was of serious nature as it posed severe threat to the economic fabric and stability of the nation, the order noted.

As the customs approached the court for extraditing him as per the provision of the bilateral treaty between the nations, the court considered the extradition treaty between India and UAE and Indian and Egypt. The request for extradition of the accused shall be made in writing and despatched through diplomatic channels with documents, including the warrant of arrest, the order noted.

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