October 25, 2021 11:22:32 pm
Five persons, including a woman, were detained Monday in a joint operation of Andhra Pradesh Police and Gujarat Police at Godhra in Panchmahal in connection with an Indian Navy espionage case.
According to police, a team of AP Police’s Counter Intelligence Cell arrived in Godhra Monday and sought cooperation from the local police claiming they have received information regarding the involvement of a few locals from Godhra West in the 2019 Navy Espionage case.
Speaking to The Indian Express, a senior official of Gujarat Police said, “A team of AP Police had arrived in Panchmahal and sought our cooperation in a search and seizure operation in Godhra. A total of five accused have been detained and are currently being interrogated at Panchmahal regarding their alleged involvement in the Navy spying case.”
The case goes back to December 20, 2019, when the AP Police’s Counter Intelligence busted an alleged espionage racket in the Indian Navy and arrested seven sailors after they allegedly passed on sensitive information such as locations of naval ships and submarines to a Pakistani handler. A few days later, four more sailors were arrested, taking the total count of apprehended sailors to 11.
According to police, the case pertains to unknown men or women “honey-trapping” the accused sailors via Facebook accounts and luring them to share sensitive pictures and videos of their locations.
Later, the National Investigation Agency (NIA) took over the case and on September 15, 2020, arrested Imran Giteli, a 37-year-old merchant from Godhra, for alleged links with Pakistan intelligence agency ISI and depositing money into the accounts of the accused Indian Navy sailors. The NIA had also filed a charge sheet against 15 accused, including Giteli, in the case.
(with inputs from Janyala Sreenivas in Hyderabad)
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