UK authorities confirm Nirav Modi's presence in the country

Story By: Indre Sharma
Monday, August, 20 2018 - 15:36

The UK authorities on Sunday has confirmed that Indian fugitive billionaire Nirav Modi is in the UK.As per reports, the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has moved a request to London to extradite the founder of "Nirav Modi Global Diamond Jewellery House" who is wanted for loan fraud.

Nirav Modi, along with his uncle Mehul Choksi, are accused in the Rs. 13,500 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud by conspiring with bank officials to fraudulently obtain Letters of Undertaking (LoUs are undertaking provided by one bank to another bank) for making payments to overseas suppliers.

Both of them had fled the country in January. India had cancelled the passports of both Mehul Choksi and Nirav Modi in February.

As per media reports, on March 7, Modi's firm Firestar Diamond Inc. applied for bankruptcy protection at a Manhattan bankruptcy court, in order to protect its assets in the United States and their revolving credit facility with Israel Discount Bank.

His properties in India, including jewellery, paintings, and real estate, worth about Rs 523 crore have been attached by the Enforcement Directorate and his accounts have been frozen. All the stores have been since shut down.

As per reports, with the collapse of his brand, Nirav Modi's fortune has significantly reduced  and his current wealth is estimated to be less than $100 million with Forbes removing him from their annual billionaires list.

In June the businesman was reported to be in the UK and has applied for political asylum at the Britain’s Home Office stating he was a victim of "political persecution" and denied any wrongdoing.

Meanwhile, Mehul Choksi has paid for Antiguan citizenship and has refused to return to India saying his life is in danger.

Nirav Modi is the 29th fugitive India has asked the UK to extradite since 2002. The UK government has rejected India's request nine times in the last 16 years.

A case for the extradition of liquor baron Vijay Mallya is still being heard by a court in Britain.


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