How did officials finger the India-bound traveler? They were tipped off when the man began to act "suspiciously" at the airport's departure lounge, Sunil Jayaratne, a spokesperson said Sunday.
After a close examination, officials found the contraband, wrapped in black plastic sheets, the spokesperson revealed. In total, the haul, consisting of 904 grams of gold, was valued at roughly $30,000.
"Among [the contraband] there were four yellow biscuits, three pieces of yellow gold, six yellow gold jewelry articles and two silver plated yellow gold jewelry articles," a customs officer told BBC Sinhala.
Though the man, described as a courier for an organized smuggling ring, was arrested, he was released after paying a $660 fine, the Khaleej Times reported.
According to the Times, Sri Lanka's customs personnel have reported 44 similar incidents in 2017. A week ago, a Sri Lankan woman who was also travelling to India was caught trying to smuggle 314.5 grams of gold in the same fashion.
Per AFP, the smuggling of gold is either part of money-laundering schemes or transferring funds from drug sales.