ED begins process to get NiMo from Hong Kong, mama Choksi from US
THE Enforcement Directorate (ED) has begun the process to get Nirav Modi from Hong Kong and Mehul Choksi from the US in the moneylaundering scam involving Punjab National Bank. Sources said the locations of the two are more or less confirmed, and that the trial court has issued Letters Rogatory (LRs), which would be forwarded to the courts overseas.
Sources said the non-bailable warrant issued by the court would be used to get the accused back.
Hong Kong has a Fugitive Offenders Act, as per a Commonwealth country can get back the person booked there; the probe agency is exploring legal options to use the Act against Nirav. With respect to Nirav’s uncle and business partner, Choksi, the agency plans to put forth its case before a US court, as India has had an extradition treaty with the country since 1999.
The court has also allowed ED to issue LRs to six countries for obtaining information about Nirav’s overseas businesses and assets. The ED wants to issue LRs under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) for seizure of documents and property/assets of Nirav and Choksi in Hong Kong, US, UK, UAE, South Africa and Singapore.
The CBI has filed three cases against Nirav, Choksi and other accused, and 19 people have been arrested so far. While the ED has filed one case under the PMLA, no arrests have been made in that. It has, however, attached properties, assets, bank accounts and shares among other things, all totalling to over R6,000 crore.