PNB fraud: Fugitive Mehul Choski has moved to Antigua, taken local passport, say officials

In response to diffusion notice issued by Interpol, the Enforcement Directorate has been informed by Antiguan authorities that Choksi arrived there this month and had taken the passport of that country, they said.

Absconding diamantaire Mehul Choksi has moved to Antigua from the US and taken the passport of the Caribbean country, PTI quoted government sources as saying.

In response to diffusion notice issued by Interpol, the Enforcement Directorate has been informed by Antiguan authorities that Choksi arrived there this month and had taken the passport of that country, they said.

Choksi had fled the country in the first week of January, nearly weeks before the alleged fraud surfaced at the Punjab National bank to the tune of Rs 13,400 crore. Uncle of his alleged partner in crime, Nirav Modi, Choksi was booked by CBI in two cases related to the scam and filed a charge sheet against him.

In Mumbai, a special court has issued a Non-Bailable Warrant (NBW) against Choksi, following which the CBI moved the Interpol for the issuance of Red Corner Notice against the Gitanjali group promoter but it is still under process. On this basis, request for Red Corner Notice was moved in June.

While RCN has been issued against Nirav Modi by the Interpol, the request for such a notice against Choksi is pending with the Lyon-based international police cooperation agency, they said.

If an RCN is issued against a person then it means that the member countries of the Lyon-based international police cooperation agency has the authority can arrest and extradite him/her.

The CBI, in its charge sheets filed on May 14, had alleged that Nirav Modi, through his companies, siphoned off funds to the tune of Rs 6,498.20 crore using fraudulent LoUs issued from PNB’s Brady House branch in Mumbai. Choksi allegedly swindled Rs 7080.86 crore, making it possibly the biggest banking scam in the country, it had alleged.

(With PTI inputs)


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