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October 03, 2017

Vijay Mallya arrested, let out on bail in second money laundering case

Vijay Mallya was on Tuesday re-arrested and released on bail in London on new charges relating to the Enforcement Directorate’s money laundering case against him.

Appearing in court, Mr. Mallya spoke twice, first to confirm his name and personal details, and then to respond “no” to the question of whether he consented to his extradition.

Mr. Mallya has been battling the Indian government’s attempts to extradite him to India to face charges relating to fraud and money laundering. Ahead of the hearing, Mr. Mallya said he had “done nothing wrong” and described the allegations he was facing as “fabricated.”

Speaking for the Crown Prosecution Service, which is pursuing the case on behalf of the Indian government, barrister Mark Summers said that the supplemental money laundering charges were made in India on June 14. He said that the allegations related to the existing charge of fraud. “The money laundering charge is founded on the same facts…it is concerned with the destination of the money,” he told the court.

“The government alleges that some may have ended up in Force India Formula 1,” he added, when asked for further details by the Chief Magistrate Emma Arbuthnot.

While the additional charges add a new level of complexity to the case - requiring further submissions from both sides, including for India to update its outline of the case, - both sides are pushing for the existing dates for the hearing (December 4) to be maintained.

“Naturally we were concerned about the implication that this has for the timetable and the hearing - we are keen to keep the same hearing and that is the date the government has pushed for,” said barrister Ben Watson, representing Mr. Mallya.

“We don’t want this happening on a regular basis,” said Ms. Arbuthnot of the addition of the new charges, warning that it could put the dates for the hearing at risk. She concurred with a defense request that no further new material should be produced in relation to the case.

Mr. Mallya was arrested on 18 April this year, after the extradition request was issued on 31 January. A number of case and management hearings have been taking place ahead of the extradition hearing, which begins on December 4 and lasts for 8 days. The next hearing is due to take place on November 20.

Text by The Hindu
 

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