New Delhi: Christian Michel, the alleged middleman in the AgustaWestland VVIP chopper deal case whose five days of remand came to an end on Saturday has asked the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to file a reply on his bail application. It has been said that arguments on Michel’s bail application will be heard on December 19.
The CBI has received another four out of five days custody of Michel. The CBI made yet another revelation saying that Michel has given bribe to someone they cannot name. Apart from revealing this bit of information, the CBI has also argued to make Rosemary Patrizi, who is appearing for Michel in the Patiala House Court, a witness in the case. It has raised questions about her credentials.
Meanwhile, Patrizi argued that she has represented him for almost five years in Italy and Switzerland. The court allowed her to talk to Michel for a total of 10 minutes. Fearing arrest, Patrizi said she was afraid since she knows everything about Michel. She said, “I hope nothing bad happens to me, I came here to help. I hope I can go back and be at my home at Christmas.”
It must also be noted that the judge has permitted the removal of Interpol notice against Michel.
Although the CBI wanted Michel’s counsel to visit only once a day, the Special Court has fixed 30 minutes time, both in morning and evening every day. The CBI had also accused Michel of not cooperating and said that the middleman is evasive in giving answers during interrogation and had earlier sought 9 days remand of Michel for his custodial interrogation.
Michel, the alleged middleman in the Rs 3600 crore VVIP chopper deal, was extradited to India from Dubai last week. He was produced in Delhi’s Patiala House court on December 10. Michel’s lawyer had alleged that his extradition is ‘politically motivated’. “He is innocent and we will soon challenge this through a legal aid in India,” she had said earlier.
Michel is being probed for having paid kickbacks worth over Rs 400 crore to Indian decision makers in the AgustaWestland scam– which involved allegations of bribery in the procurement of 12 VVIP helicopters, meant to ferry Indian Prime Minister, President and other important personalities.