Nirav Modi diverted USD 165 million to sister, father: ED chargesheet
Imagine a family where father, brother, step-brother, sister, brother-in-law are all accused in India's biggest bank fraud. Nirav Modi and family has broken all records by entering into the list of accused in the 14,000 pages long chargesheet submitted by Enforcement Directorate (ED) in Rs 12,636 crore Punjab National Bank (PNB) case.
On Thursday, the ED submitted its first prosecution complaint against 24 accused, including 14 individuals and 10 companies, under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA).
The 24 names of accused include: Nirav Modi, Neeshal Modi (brother), Nehal Modi (step-brother), Deepak Modi (father), Purvi Mehta (sister), Mayank Mehta (brother-in-law), Gokulnath Shetty, Shyam Wadhwa, Solar Exports, Stellar Exports, Diamond R US, Firestar Diamonds, Firestar International, Firestone Trading, Mac Business, Bentley Properties and others.
The only person left out in the list is Ami Modi, wife of Nirav Modi for having "no crucial role" in the fraud, till now. But the surprising name is Nehal Modi, Nirav Modi's step-brother "who has played a crucial hidden role in the money laundering case".
ED had filed two ECIRs against Nirav Modi and Mehul Choksi for Rs 6,500 crore ($ 1,015 million) and Rs 6,136 crore, respectively, under the money laundering act.
As per the chargesheet, ED has traced the money trail of $ 679 million, which was flown to Dubai and Hong Kong and from there to entities in USA and Belgium.
To divert the bank money, 15 dummy companies were used (first layer). From those 15 companies, nine companies were registered in Dubai and six companies in Hong Kong. "Some money got round-tripped back to India, some diverted in creating personal assets and some to pay off earlier debts," a senior official said.
The agency has managed to crack the first layer of web companies (for money trail), but still a long way to go to check the second and third layer of companies from where money has been diverted to the bank accounts of beneficiaries.
The valuation of seized diamonds from Modi's showrooms turned out to be 27 per cent of booked value.
After a comprehensive valuation by government-authorised valuers, the real value of diamond stocks seized by ED concluded to Rs 489 crore against the booked value of Rs 1,785 crore in Modi case.
"It also means, for instance, Modi was selling a diamond worth Rs 27 lakh at the price tag of Rs 1 crore to a customer, which is nothing but fooling and looting customers," the official said.
The agency is geared up with series of action plan that includes attachment and confiscation of Modi's properties worth Rs 700 crore, to get all accused declared as "proclaimed offenders". The agency will request for a red corner notice against Modi before Interpol and will begin an extradition process to bring Modi to India.
In next one month, the ED would file its second chargesheet against Mehul Choksi, Gitanjali Group, Nakshatra, Gili Ltd and others for Rs 6,136 crore fraud to PNB.
India Today.in was the first to reveal that Purvi Mehta's name would appear in the list of accused for her alleged role in the fraud. The chargesheet stated that out of $ 679 mn, Nirav Modi diverted $ 115 mn to sister Purvi Mehta and $ 50 mn to father Deepak Modi, who are now non-resident Indians (NRI).