PNB scam: ED seizes over Rs 2.18-bn assets of absconding Choksi, others

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The Enforcement Directorate (ED) has seized assets worth over Rs 2.18 billion.

The ED is probing a case along with the CBI where it is alleged that Nirav Modi and Choksi defrauded the Brady House branch of the Punjab National Bank (PNB) in Mumbai to the tune of about $2 billion (over Rs 130 billion) in alleged connivance with officials. Mehul Choksi sent over Rs 32.5 bn to foreign shores, says ED.

Mehul Choksi

They said three provisional orders under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) were issued by the central investigative agency’s zonal office in Mumbai for attachment of the properties in India and abroad.

The beneficiaries of these assets put under attachment are:

– Diamond jeweller Mehul Choksi, now absconding, 

– Mihir Bhansali, a close aide and US-based executive of main accused in the case Nirav Modi, and

– A company named A P Gems and Jewellery Park.

A Special Court has given Mehul Choksi time till Oct 30 to reply to ED plea.

While Choksi has been last reported to be in the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda, the Interpol (global police) has recently issued a red corner notice against Bhansali in this case.

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