London. Fugitive diamond trader Nirav Modi has applied to appeal against the decision of the London High Court to avoid extradition. In April itself, Britain’s Home Minister Preeti Patel signed the order to extradite Nirav Modi to India. Nirav Modi is wanted in India in connection with the fraud of Punjab National Bank (PNB) for about Rs.13 thousand crores.
The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has also confirmed that an appeal has been filed, but the judge of the High Court, who has to take a decision on it, has not yet been assigned the case. 50-year-old Nirav Modi is currently lodged in Wandsworth Jail in south-west London.
The decision to extradite Nirav Modi came after a decision by Westminster Magistrate Court Judge Sam Gooji in February said that Modi had to answer before an Indian court and that extradition under British law did not apply to his case. It happens.
Giving information about Nirav Modi’s extradition to India in April, a Home Ministry spokesman had said, “The district judge had given a verdict in the Nirav Modi extradition case on February 25. The extradition order was signed on 15 April. After this, Nirav Modi had 14 days left to appeal against the order of the District Judge and Home Minister.
What did the Westminster magistrate judge say
Nirav Modi, along with his maternal uncle Mehul Choksi, is accused of cheating the Punjab National Bank (PNB). In February, Judge Gooji said, “I am satisfied that the evidence in Nirav Modi’s case can be used to convict him in the Punjab National Bank fraud case.” Prima facie makes the case. He had said in a detailed judgment that the allegations leveled by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI), Enforcement Directorate (ED) are prima facie established. These allegations are money laundering, threats of witnesses and erasure of evidence. The court had admitted that her mental health was deteriorating due to her prolonged stay in a London prison and that it had increased due to the Kovid-19 epidemic, but did not make the decision based on her risk of suicide. It can be said that extraditing him is ‘unjust and oppressive’.
Two types of criminal cases against Nirav Modi
It is noteworthy that Nirav Modi is facing two types of criminal charges. In the first case, the CBI is probing fraudulently obtaining a ‘Letter of Undertaking’ from PNB or compromising the loan, while the Directorate of Enforcement is investigating the money laundering case. He is facing charges of disappearing evidence and threatening witnesses or ‘death due to criminal intimidation’, which have been linked to CBI cases. In the court order sent to the Home Minister, the judge said, “I do not accept Nirav Modi’s argument that he was involved in legitimate business and used the letter of undertaking only at the authorized level.”
What happens if the appeal is granted
In this case, if an appeal is filed and it is accepted, then the hearing will be held in the Administrative Cell of the London High Court. Appeals can also be filed in the case in the Supreme Court of Britain, but this is possible only if the High Court certifies that the question of law of public importance has been raised in the appeal or the High Court or Supreme Court may allow the appeal .
CBI had filed a case in 2018
It is noteworthy that the CBI had registered a case against Nirav Modi, Mehul Choksi and others, including the then Punjab National Bank (PNB) officer, on 31 January 2018. The FIR was lodged on the bank’s complaint alleging that the accused issued a ‘letter of undertaking’ from the public bank in a fake conspiracy to criminalize the conspiracy. Through the letter of undertaking, the bank guarantees abroad when the customer goes for a loan. The first charge sheet in this case was filed on 14 May 2018, in which 25 people, including Modi, were accused, while the second charge sheet was filed on 20 December 2019, in which 30, including 25 former accused were named.
Nirav Modi ran away from the country on 1 January 2018
Nirav Modi had left the country on January 1, 2018, even before the CBI lodged an FIR. After this, in June 2018, on the request of the CBI, Interpol issued a redcorner notice against him. The British police arrested him from London in March 2019 and since then he has applied for bail several times, but was rejected by the Westminster court and the London High Court. At the same time, the CBI presented the extradition request from Britain with documentary evidence and testimony in the British court.