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Businessman smuggles gold bars by swallowing them

Indian Man Swallows $16K Worth Of Gold Bars

For a couple days, one Indian businessman was worth his weight in gold. Well, at least a little bit.

According to his doctor, the 63-year-old businessman swallowed 12 small gold bars, weighing nearly 1 pound, in an attempt to smuggle the precious metal past Indian customs. The Guardian reports the man checked himself into a hospital after a few days of vomiting and trouble defecating. After a three-hour surgery doctors called "tedious," the nearly $16,000 worth of gold was safely removed from the man's stomach and promptly confiscated by the police.

The man's doctor at Delhi's Sir Ganga Ram Hospital says it was one of his strangest operations, the BBC reports. "I remember having taken out a bladder stone weighing 1kg from a patient. But finding gold in a patient's stomach was something unbelievable."

Believe it or not, gobbling gold isn't unheard of in south Asia, according to the University of Nottingham. Because India imports the most gold in the world, its 15 percent import tax on the metal is one of the highest and spurs many to go "bottoms up" with their bars.

The BBC reports the hike has caused gold imports to plummet nearly 90 percent in the past year. But the element remains popular for Indians of all areas and classes.

"Shops sell it from north to south India. The rich buy it more, but even those people who generally struggle to meet their basic day-to-day needs don't hesitate to buy it whenever they possibly can."

And due to the tax increase, smuggling is on the rise. In September, two Sri Lankan men were caught with several kilograms of gold biscuits concealed in their rectums before a flight to India. According to Mining.com, it was the most gold Sri Lankan officials had ever found in a human body.

Left up to us, we'd rather just pay the fee since, according to the Air Intelligence Unit at a Mumbai airport, concealing gold bars inside the body can lead to infections, pain and rashes. Ouch.

Join the discussion

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aaldrew April 19 2014 at 2:52 PM

Tough story to swallow.

Flag Reply +1 rate up
belldn3 April 19 2014 at 11:18 AM

Now we know he swallows.

Flag Reply +4 rate up
hark4109 April 19 2014 at 11:17 AM

All I can say is what a STUPE he was!

Flag Reply +2 rate up
classynsassy49 April 19 2014 at 11:48 AM

That is one of the " stupidest" things I ever heard of!!!!!

Flag Reply +2 rate up
verenamaitaylo April 19 2014 at 10:55 AM


Flag Reply +2 rate up
sbsuperfly April 19 2014 at 10:36 AM

$16k is not much gold

Flag Reply +3 rate up
1 reply
roseyoungstewart sbsuperfly April 19 2014 at 2:46 PM

it was all less than one pound the article said.

Flag Reply 0 rate up
belldn3 April 19 2014 at 9:29 AM


Flag Reply +7 rate up
BOB April 19 2014 at 9:24 AM

Maybe its time for some dental work ? Get you a gold grille / teeth . Nothing ilegal about that and is normal for dental procedures . LOL

Flag Reply +1 rate up
1 reply
rpthe1 BOB April 19 2014 at 2:20 PM

ewww yucky ;-(

Flag Reply 0 rate up
elpasoworld April 19 2014 at 9:10 AM

Or sell a bunch or stuff on ebay and leave the money in the paypal account and then TAKE the money OUT of an ATM in any country in the world.

Flag Reply +3 rate up
bocavert April 19 2014 at 9:05 AM

Gold, like everything else is only worth what someone is willing to trade for.
We as Americans hold most of the gold resources.
Ft Knox and West Point are among the US GOLD BULLION DEPOSITORY.
Maybe we should call it the Gold "Suppository"?

Flag Reply +1 rate up
3 replies
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