National

U.K. yet to act on our requests: ED

Enforcement agency refutes a media report alleging inaction in the Nirav Modi case

The United Kingdom is yet to take action on the requests for provisional attachment of assets belonging to the Punjab National Bank fraud accused Nirav Modi and sharing relevant documents pertaining to the case, the Enforcement Directorate said on Tuesday.

As part of the ongoing money laundering investigations, the Directorate had sent a request under the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty (MLAT) to the U.K. Authorities on March 17, 2018, for collection of relevant documents and other details. A supplementary MLAT request was sent on October 3 last year for the execution of an order for provisional attachment of Mr. Modi’s assets located there.

“In response to these MLAT requests, the U.K. authorities had raised queries from time to time, which were promptly examined and detailed replies were sent by the Enforcement Directorate. These MLAT requests are yet to be executed by the U.K. authorities,” said the agency.

Refuting a media report alleging inaction by the enforcement agencies in pursuing the Nirav Modi case with the U.K. authorities, the Directorate said the report was contrary to the facts. “The report also appears to be bereft of knowledge of law and procedure. The facts have been distorted with speculative writing and wrong conclusions have been drawn,” it said.

The ED said the U.K. government’s consistent stand regarding a non-bailable warrant was that it could be executed only through an extradition request and not via any Letter Rogatory (judicial request) sent under the MLAT. Extradition request can only be sent after the charge sheet is filed, the court takes cognisance of it and an open-ended non-bailable warrant is issued against the accused person. “Accordingly, upon initiation of investigations by the Enforcement Directorate on February 14, 2018, against Nirav Modi and others, the first non-bailable warrant issued on March 5, 2018, was not acted upon by the U.K. government,” the ED said.

The ED filed the first charge sheet in May last year and then an open-ended warrant was issued in June. The Interpol published a Red Notice against Nirav Modi on June 29, 2018, following which a request for his extradition was sent to the U.K. on July 31, 2018.

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Printable version | Feb 19, 2020 1:34:04 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/uk-yet-to-act-on-our-requests-ed/article26514895.ece

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