Mehul Choksi missing case: Antigua Information Minister says, not authorised to disclose intelligence information

·2-min read
Antigua Information Minister Melford Nicholas.
Antigua Information Minister Melford Nicholas.

Saint John's [Antigua], June 4 (ANI): Antigua Information Minister Melford Nicholas has said that he is not authorised to disclose intelligence information regarding Indian fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi's missing case.

An intelligence report has been presented to the Antigua Cabinet regarding Mehul Choksi's missing case and the mysterious girl who was with him in Dominica.

Information Minister of Antigua, Nicholas said: "We did receive intelligence briefings, I am not authorised to disclose any particular intelligence information on the basis that it could prejudice the investigation that is taking place."

"I don't know about the law enforcement officials here but clearly they will have to interfere with law enforcement officials in Dominica as the matter is in the court," added Nicholas.

Earlier, Choksi's wife Priti Choksi had said that the mysterious girl who is rumored to be his girlfriend is known to her husband and to his other acquaintances.

"The woman was known to my husband and to his other acquaintances. She walked with my husband periodically when she was visiting Antigua. From what I have understood from people who have met her, the woman shown on media channels is not the same woman that they knew as Barbara," said Priti Choksi.

This remark came after Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne last week had said Mehul Choksi may have taken his girlfriend on a romantic trip to Dominica, where he was busted.

Meanwhile, Antigua and Barbuda prefer that fugitive diamantaire Mehul Choksi be repatriated directly to India from Dominica, the Cabinet of the Caribbean island country decided in a meeting.

In a Facebook post, Prime Minister Gaston Browne said his cabinet held a discussion on Choksi's matter, adding that he has become Dominica's problem at this time.

Choksi had gone missing from Antigua on May 23 after going out for dinner and was soon caught in Dominica after Antigua police launched a manhunt for him last month.

He was charged with illegal entry by the police in Dominica after he allegedly escaped from Antigua and Barbuda in a possible attempt to evade extradition to India.

A Dominican court on Thursday denied bail to Choksi. During the hearing, Dominican Judge Bernie Stephenson said the fugitive businessman must answer the illegal entry charges into Dominica in Magistrates court.

Further, the fugitive diamantaire's lawyer Vijay Aggarwal said on Wednesday Choksi was kidnapped, he did not go to Dominica on his own free will and added that the only question in front of the Dominican court is whether he entered Dominica illegally or not and whether the local police has the right to keep him in custody.

Choksi and his nephew Nirav Modi are accused in the Rs 13,500 crore Punjab National Bank fraud case. Choksi fled the country. He was granted citizenship of Antigua and Barbuda in January 2018. He is involved in a legal battle to prevent his extradition to India. (ANI)