COIMBATORE: Coimbatore district police recovered Rs 90 lakh hawala money from the abandoned car that was said to be stolen from a Kerala native by a six-member gang near Navakkarai on Salem - Kochi National Highway. The incident allegedly happened on Friday early morning when A Abdul Salam (50), a realtor, and his driver A Samsutheen (42), both from Pookkottur in Malapuram district, were heading towards Kerala from Bangalore.
They had allegedly told KG Chavadi police that a gang waylaid them and fled with their car, two mobile phones and Rs 27.5 lakh that belonged to one Mohammad Ali of Malapuram who was into gold business.
Based on their complaint, police registered a case and formed three special teams to trace the gang. But, during the investigation, Mohammad Ali claimed that he had nothing to do with the cash.
Meanwhile, on Saturday early morning, the car was found abandoned on Siruvani Main road near Madampatti on the outskirts of the city. When police confiscated the car in the evening, they found Rs 90 lakh unaccounted cash in it. Sources said that the car’s interior was altered to hide the cash.
Superintendent of Police Ara Arularasu said that during questioning, the jeweller had told him that he was not aware of the money. “Also, Salam did not reveal some information during the inquiry. Due to the contradiction in his statements, he was listed as a suspect and we checked the car again. It’s at this time that we chanced upon the hawala money.
Finally, we came to the conclusion that Salam is involved in hawala transaction,” he said. Sources added that Salam was facing such cases in Kerala and that he was arrested a few years ago for a similar Hawala money transaction. A senior police official said that they are investigating whether the robbery actually took place or not. “A case will be filed against Salam for giving false information with an intension to cheat police and it would be referred to Enforcement directorate for further investigation, as it involves Hawala transaction,” he added.