Mumbai: The dedicated anti-money laundering court on Saturday issued non-bailable arrest warrants against Nirav Modi, his wife Ami, brother Nishal and uncle Mehul Choksi—prime accused in over $2 billion Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud case.
Special Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) judge M.S .Azmi granted the Enforcement Directorate’s plea regarding the issuance of non-bailable warrant against the prime accused of the fraud.
Meanwhile, in another related case, the sessions court hearing the matter had also allowed the plea of another investigation agency, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) regarding judicial custody of six accused in the case including Gokulnath Shetty, Hemant D. Bhatt, Manoj Kharat, Bechu Tiwari, Yashwant Joshi and Praful Sawant. The court has allowed the judicial custody of all the accused of 14 days.
The CBI had also produced another arrested accused, Bishubrata Mishra who was chief auditor of the PNB at Brady House branch, at the court. With the arrest of Mishra, the agencies have arrested a total of 14 people so far in the case including employees of PNB and those who were working with Modi owned companies.
Earlier, on Wednesday, Hiten Venegaonkar, an advocate who was representing the ED had argued that “The prime accused did not appear for the questioning despite three summons were issued to him on February 15, 17 and 22, respectively. “We are also seeking Letters Rogatory (LR) to other seven countries including Malaysia, Armenia, France, China, Japan, Russia and Belgium," said Venegaonkar.
The Letter Rogatory is a request from the court of a sovereign country to a court of another sovereign country to obtain information about businesses and assets of a person in that country.
During the hearing, Vijay Aggarwal, the counsel appearing for Modi, argued that the accused also get a chance to be heard before the court issues a non-bailable warrant.