New Delhi: Businessman Ratul Puri on Thursday moved an application stating that he wanted to surrender before the Central Bureau of Investigation court in the Agusta Westland money laundering case.
This move comes a day after a Delhi Rose Avenue court refused to cancel a non-bailable warrant (NBW) against Ratul Puri in the VVIP chopper scam. Puri is already under the custody of Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the Moser Baer bank fraud case.
In a series of setbacks on Tuesday, the trial court handed over Ratul Puri to the ED for a 6-day custodial interrogation in a separate money laundering case linked to a bank loan fraud. Besides, the Delhi High Court had dismissed Puri’s anticipatory bail application in the case.
(Also Read: ‘It Appears to be Purely Mala Fide Action’, Says Madhya Pradesh CM Kamal Nath on Arrest of Nephew Ratul Puri)
Earlier this week, the court ruled that the “Accused had left the ED office on July 26 without signing his statement. He has made himself unavailable and his whereabouts could not be ascertained.” As per the ED’s submission, the accused was very likely to tamper with evidence and influence the witnesses “as he already did earlier”.
About AgustaWestland Chopper Scam:
The AgustaWestland deal was scrapped by the NDA government in 2014 over alleged breach of contractual obligations and charges of payment of kickbacks for securing the deal. The case which came to light in early 2013, pertains to alleged irregularities in the purchase of 12 VVIP choppers from AgustaWestland, a British subsidiary of Italy-based Aerospace company Finmeccanica.
According to the ED, the proceeds of the crime was deposited by Ratul Puri in various accounts of the companies he owned. Puri’s name cropped up when he was named by the ED in a chargesheet on May 22. This happened after Sushen Mohan Gupta, a defence agent who was arrested on March 26 for his alleged role in the scam, mentioned to the investigators that Puri was his ‘friend’.