Chennai Super Kings boss Gurunath Meiyappan and actor Vindoo Dara Singh, arrested in connection with the IPL spot-fixing case, were remanded in judicial custody till June 14 by a local court here on Monday.
“There is no further ground made out for police custody of the accused and they are henceforth remanded in judicial custody,” observed Additional Metropolitan Magistrate M. N. Saleem, rejecting the Mumbai Crime Branch’s request for extending the duo’s police custody.
The court remanded Mr. Meiyappan, Mr. Singh, Alpesh Kumar Patel, a hawala operator and Prem Taneja, a conduit for bookies, in judicial custody till June 14.
Public Prosecutor Kiran Bendbar argued that further custody of the accused was required for tracing the absconding bookies (the Jaipur brother duo, Chandresh alias ‘Jupiter’) involved in this case and to find out more about their financial transactions.
However, defence counsels for Mr. Meiyappan and Mr. Singh told the court that enough remand time had been given to the police and that their clients should be remanded in judicial custody.
Soon after the remand order, both Mr. Meiyappan and Mr. Singh filed bail applications, whose orders the court has reserved till Tuesday.
Urging the court to grant bail for his client, Mr. Meiyappan’s lawyer Abad Ponda argued that his client was not involved in match-fixing or spot-fixing.
“The only case against Mr. Meiyappan is that he placed bets with Vindoo. This charge is a bailable offence,” said Mr. Ponda.
Likewise, Satish Maneshinde contended the charge that his client was involved in a larger conspiracy, stating that at most he could be for contacting bookies.
In another development, bookie Kishore Badlani, known as Kishore ‘Pune’ was arrested by the Mumbai Police and remanded in custody till June 6.
Mr. Badlani, who had reportedly fled to Europe after his name surfaced in the betting racket, was detained in the morning by the Mumbai Police at the International Airport here and was arrested and produced by a metropolitan magistrate in the afternoon.
In its remand application, the Crime Branch asserted that Mr. Badlani’s custody was required to ascertain the nature of the financial transactions between bookies in India and Pakistan, while noting that the four mobile phones were recovered from Mr. Badlani were allegedly used to communicate with bookies in Pakistan.
The application also noted that Mr. Badlani forged documents to procure SIM cards that were later used in betting.