June 27, 2019

PNB Fraud: Westminster Magistrates' Court In London Extends Fugitive Diamantaire Nirav Modi's Remand Until July 25

[ By Bobby Anthony ]


A United Kingdom court has extended fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi's remand until July 25, it has been reported.

He appeared before the Westminster Magistrates' Court in London through a video link from his prison cell at Wandsworth prison in South West London where he has been kept , ever since his arrest in March in connection with the nearly USD 2 billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud and money laundering case.

This was his first appearance after his bail appeal was rejected by the UK High Court earlier this June, which was his fourth attempt at bail.

In a related development on the same day, Swiss government authorities responded to India’s Enforcement Directorate’s request and froze four Swiss bank accounts of absconding diamantaire Nirav Modi and his sister Purvi.

These bank accounts are reported to hold deposits totally worth Rs 283.16 crore.

Earlier, the Enforcement Directorate had made an official request and informed Switzerland’s government authorities that the money held in these four deposits are “proceeds of crime” of a bank fraud and attract criminal provisions of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).

Bank accounts of Nirav Modi, the absconding diamantaire who is now under arrest in this case in London, hold deposits worth USD 3,74,11,596 while bank accounts in the name of his sister Purvi Modi hold deposits worth GBP 27,38,136. The total amount being held in all four bank accounts would be around Rs 283.16 crore.

The Enforcement Directorate is expected to try and attach these bank accounts under the PMLA.

Incidentally, the Enforcement Directorate and the Central Bureau of Investigation have been investigating Nirav Modi, his diamantaire uncle Mehul Choksi as well as others for their alleged roles in money laundering and corruption.

It is alleged that they defrauded the Brady House branch of the Punjab National Bank in Mumbai to the tune of over Rs 13,000 crore.

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