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A file photo of Vijay Mallya (Photo: Reuters)
A file photo of Vijay Mallya (Photo: Reuters)

India moves closer in getting Vijay Mallya extradited

  • The High Court of Justice, London, today rejected Vijay Mallya's plea to file an appeal with the UK Supreme Court against his extradition
  • Mallya can appeal to the European Court of Human Rights, which won't stop his extradition but can be stayed pending ruling

MUMBAI : Business tycoon Vijay Mallya is one step closer to being forced to return to India to face fraud charges after a London court made further UK challenges to his extradition nearly impossible.

The High Court of Justice, London, UK on Thursday rejected Mallya's plea to file an appeal with the UK Supreme Court against his extradition. This comes after a Division Bench of UK High Court on 20 April had dismissed his appeal against the lower court's order recommending his extradition to face trial in India .

Two judges said Thursday that the fallen tycoon’s case raises no issues of public interest, all but ruling out an appeal to the UK Supreme Court. The 64-year-old Mallya, who’s on bail, has lost a series of court challenges since 2018.

The Indian investigative agencies - Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) and Enforcement Directorate had filed extradition plea in UK against Mallya on offences of cheating, criminal conspiracy. Mallya is alleged to have conspired with public servants to defraud IDBI Bank. He is alleged to have wilfully defaulted on the loans availed by the grounded airlines — Kingfisher Airlines to the extent of 900 crores. The investigations concluded in January 2017 and in March 2017 the Indian agencies had filed the extradition request.

The founder of Kingfisher Airlines was arrested by UK authorities on 20 April 2017.

In a statement CBI said it is a reminder that economic offenders, facing probes in large value frauds, cannot consider themselves as above the process merely because they have changed jurisdictions.

"The judgement also vindicates the painstaking investigation by CBI, especially since Mr. Mallya had raised various issues with regard to the admissibility of evidence, the fairness of investigation itself and extraneous consideration, with a view to divert attention from his own acts," said CBI in the statement.

Typically in these cases extradition must take place within 28 days of this judgement. Mallya can appeal to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), which won't stop his extradition but can be stayed pending ruling.

CBI in the statement also said that it had made a painstaking case to satisfy the courts on various aspects of extradition and to establish the existence of a prima facia case against him as well as to convince the courts about compliance of ECHR norms with regard to prison conditions and Human Rights.

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