Choksi back in Antigua and Barbuda after getting bail in Dominica

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New Delhi, Jul 15 (PTI) Absconding diamantaire Mehul Choksi has returned to Antigua and Barbuda, his abode since 2018, after nearly 51 days of custody in neighbouring Dominica for illegal entry which his lawyers claim was a kidnapping plan, local media reported there. Choksi, 62, was given bail by Dominica High Court to travel back to Antigua for seeking medical help from a neurologist based there and return to face trial when given fitness clearance by his doctors.

After depositing bail money of EC Dollars 10000, Choksi in a light green shirt and khaki shorts flew back to Antigua in a chartered plane, Antigua News Room reported.

Officials of Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Antigua and Barbuda met him at the airport.

The issue of his return was brought before the Cabinet under Prime Minister Gaston Browne while it was in session. The Cabinet observed that Royal Police Force of Antigua and Barbuda will continue to investigate the claims of Choksi's kidnapping and cases of revoking his citizenship and his extradition will continue in the courts there.

Choksi, wanted in Rs 13,500 crore bank fraud case in India, had mysteriously gone missing on May 23 from Antigua and Barbuda where he has been staying after fleeing India. He was detained in neighbouring island country of Dominica for illegal entry on May 24 after a possible romantic escapade with his rumoured girlfriend.

His lawyers alleged that he was abducted from Jolly Harbour in Antigua on May 23 by policemen looking like Antiguan and Indian and brought to Dominica on a boat. While seeking bail in Dominica, Choksi had attached his medical reports including CT scan reports which showed 'mildly worsening hematoma'.

The doctors recommend an urgent review of his medical condition by a neurologist and a neurosurgical consultant. 'The services are not currently available on the island. All courtesies extended to him would be greatly appreciated,' the CT scan report dated June 29 signed by Doctors Yerandy Galle Gutierrez and Rene Gilbert Veranes of Princess Margaret Hospital of Dominica had said.

Going by medical reports, the high court allowed Choksi to return to Antigua for his treatment. PTI ABS ZMN

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