National

ED attaches property of Michel’s kin

Middleman’s ex-wife used kickbacks from VVIP chopper deal for purchase in Paris

The Enforcement Directorate has provisionally attached a property in France belonging to a company linked to the former wife of alleged middleman Christian Michel, in connection with the money laundering probe into the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal case.

The property, which is located in Paris, was bought in the name of SCI Solaime. The ED said the company is associated with Mr. Michel’s former wife Valerie, who had received the proceeds of the crime from him. The middleman was extradited from the UAE in December last year and arrested under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act.

Routed via Dubai

Investigations have revealed that Mr. Michel received about €42 million in the deal. The funds were transferred from Dubai-based companies to various entities. He had also sent more than €9.22 lakh (equivalent to ₹5.83 crore) to his former wife, which was invested in the Paris-based property through SCI Solaime.

In another matter, the agency has attached assets worth ₹8.46 crore of lawyer Gautam Khaitan, who is also an accused in the AgustaWestland case. The properties are located in Delhi, Haryana and Uttarakhand.

The attachment has been done on the basis of a case instituted against Mr. Khaitan by the Income-Tax Department under the Black Money (Undisclosed Foreign Income and Assets) and Imposition of Tax Act. “He laundered money in various personal and companies’ bank accounts in Singapore and Mauritius,” said an official.

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Printable version | Mar 28, 2020 6:03:50 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/ed-attaches-property-of-michels-kin/article26502355.ece

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