New Delhi, dated 27th August 2020.
A global arrest warrant has been issued against Ami Modi, the wife of a fugitive diamond merchant Nirav Modi, a prime accused in connection with over USD 2 billion – Punjab National Bank [PNB] fraud case of money-laundering being conducted by the ED. According to the warrant, Interpol has asked it’s 192 member countries to arrest or to detain the persons if spotted in their respective countries.
As per the request of the Enforcement Directorate (ED), the global police body has issued a ‘Red Corner Notice’ and charged her for conspiring, and money laundering under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002 with her husband Nirav Modi apart from his uncle Mehul Choksi and other associates. It is an inquiry notice to the agencies worldwide and is issued to locate, identify, or obtain information on a person’s arrest or detain such person of interest, in a criminal investigation.
Shortly before the CBI registered FIR, Mr. Modi along with his wife and other family members had left India soon after the fraud case came into light in the first week of January 2018. He was declared as an “Economic Fugitive Offender” under the Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018 by a Mumbai Court in December in 2019.
The alleged role of Ms. Modi as revealed by the ED probe in the laundering of funds generated through the diversion of loans from the bank. She used to hold the position of a director in a few fraudulent companies used by her husband for money laundering. According to the agency, she along with her children is the beneficiary The Ithaca Trust. The settler is Mr. Modi’s sister Purvi. A red notice is also pending upon her.
Meanwhile, in March 2019 after being arrested by Scotland Yard in London, Modi is lodged in a jail in the UK. The ED has confiscated his assets worth Rs. 329.66 crores of his linked properties. The seized properties along with bank deposits and shares include flats in Mumbai, London, and UAE.
Gayatri Vipul Lachke