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VVIP chopper case: Accused gets time for scrutiny of docs

NEW DELHI, Oct 3:  A Delhi court today granted two weeks to a woman director of two Dubai-based firms to complete the scrutiny of documents in a money laundering case filed against her in connection with the Rs 3,600 crore VVIP chopper deal.
Special Judge Arvind Kumar allowed Shivani Saxena’s plea seeking more time to go through the documents, including copy of the charge sheet and the papers filed along with it.
The court posted the matter for further hearing on October 16.
The Enforcement Directorate had earlier handed over a copy of the charge sheet to Saxena.
The court had on September 19 taken cognisance of the supplementary charge sheet in which the ED had told the court that Saxena was an “active” director of the Dubai-based firms.
She, along with the private firms — M/s UHY Saxena and M/s Matrix Holdings in which she was a director, was chargesheeted by the agency under various sections of the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
Saxena was arrested by the ED on July 17 from Chennai in Tamil Nadu.
The final report also mentions the name of her husband Rajiv Saxena, who too is a directors in these two firms and has been evading ED summons to join the probe.
However, he has not been arrayed as an accused so far and the agency said another supplementary charge sheet may follow.
Saxena and her husband are residents of Palm Jumeirah in Dubai, an archipelago which is home to the most expensive properties in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), the report said.
It alleged that the two Dubai-based firms were the entities “through which the proceeds of crime have been routed and further layered and integrated in buying the immovable properties/shares, among others” in this case.
The agency claimed that its probe found that AgustaWestland, United Kingdom, had “paid an amount of Euro 58 million as kickbacks” through two Tunisia-based firms.
“These companies further siphoned off the said money in the name of consultancy contracts to M/s Interstellar Technologies Limited, Mauritius and others which were further transferred to M/s UHY Saxena and M/s Matrix Holdings Ltd, Dubai and others,” the charge sheet has said.
The ED, in this case, had also arrested Delhi-based businessman Gautam Khaitan who is currently out on bail.
The ED had registered a PMLA case in 2014 and named 21 people, including Tyagi, in its FIR on money laundering.
On January 1, 2014, India had scrapped the contract with Finmeccanica’s British subsidiary AgustaWestland for supplying 12 AW-101 VVIP choppers to the IAF over alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of kickbacks to the tune of Rs 423 crore allegedly paid by the firm for securing the deal. (PTI)

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