Fugitive diamond merchant Mehul Choksi, absconding from India on charges of the Punjab National Bank fraud (PNB scam) case, has been arrested by the High Court of Dominica for illegally entering the island country after he disappeared under mysterious circumstances from neighboring Antigua and Barbuda. He was denied bail in the case on Saturday. The High Court refused to grant him bail on the ground that he was in danger of running away.
Meanwhile, top sources told CNN-News18 that Choksi wants to prolong his legal hearing in Dominica to force the ED and CBI teams to leave Dominica. Choksi’s legal team has suggested him to make the trial as long as possible, so that the Indian teams of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) can leave.
Lawyers have suggested Choksi’s family to make it a human rights issue as well. Sources said the Indian agencies leaving Dominica will reduce the pressure on the courts and make it difficult for local lawyers to argue the matter on the basis of facts. Lawyers have also suggested how Choksi’s family should talk to the media.
Let us tell you that the diamond trader, wanted in the Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case of Rs 13,500 crore, is currently in the custody of Dominica Police. Choksi was arrested on May 23 for illegally entering the Caribbean island nation.
Choksi had acquired citizenship of the Caribbean island nation of Antigua and Barbuda in 2017, even before fleeing India in January 2018. Choksi and his nephew Nirav Modi are accused of allegedly defrauding PNB to the tune of Rs 13,500 crore in connivance with some bank officials. Nirav Modi is currently lodged in a London jail.
CBI is investigating against both. He is being heard in the Dominica High Court and Magistrates Court. High Court has to decide whether Choksi’s entry in Dominica was legal or illegal? At the same time, it is also to be decided whether the police has arrested him legally or illegally? Only then will a decision be taken on handing over Choksi to another country.
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