New Delhi, Nov 14 (PTI) Alleged hawala dealer Mohammad Aslam Wani, arrested in connection with a decade-old money laundering case involving Kashmiri separatist Shabir Shah, today moved a Delhi court seeking bail.
Additional Sessions Judge Sidharth Sharma sought a response from the Enforcement Directorate (ED) by tomorrow on the bail plea which claimed that 36-year old Wani was wrongly implicated in the case.
The application submitted that a 2010 trial court judgement clearing Wani of terror funding charges in 2005 case, based on which the current money laundering case was lodged in 2007, was confirmed by the Delhi High Court on October 31.
“The effect of confirmation of acquittal of the applicant (Wani) is that there is no material left to connect him with the co-accused (Shah) as it was not proved that money was recovered or was meant to be used for any illegal purpose (hawala),” the plea moved by advocate M S Khan said.
The ED had in September filed a charge sheet against Wani and Shah, whose bail application in the case was also dismissed on August 22.
Wani was arrested by the ED from Srinagar on August 6 with the help of the state police and is currently in judicial custody. Shabir Shah was arrested by the agency from Srinagar on July 26.
The ED action against the two was in pursuance of an August 2005 case in which the Delhi Police’s Special Cell had arrested Wani, who is alleged to have claimed he had passed on Rs 2.25 crore to Shah.
In 2010, a Delhi court had cleared Wani of terror funding charges but convicted him under the Arms Act. The ED had registered a criminal case under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act against Shah and Wani.
On August 26, 2005, Wani was apprehended with the ED claiming Rs 63 lakh was recovered from him. It was also alleged that the funds were received through hawala channels from the Middle East, along with a large cache of ammunition.
This is published unedited from the PTI feed.