New Delhi: In a major development to the Punjab National Bank (PNB) fraud and money laundering case, a London court on Thursday extended fugitive diamantaire Nirav Modi’s judicial custody till October 17.

The 48-year-old businessman, who is accused of laundering money in connection with Rs 13,500 crore fraud case, appeared before the Westminster Magistrates’ Court via video link from Wandsworth prison in south-west London, where he is lodged at present. Earlier the court had extended his judicial custody till September 19 which ended today.

A few days back, his brother Nehal Modi had received a Red Corner Notice from Interpol in connection with the alleged Rs 13,500 crore bank transactions at the Punjab National Bank (PNB). A Belgium citizen, Nehal is allegedly accused of helping his brother Nirav in laundering bank funds.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) in its complaint had mentioned that Nehal knowingly helped his brother Nirav divert money to shell corporations and destroyed key evidence.

Nirav Modi and his nephew Mehul Choksi are the two main accused in the PNB loan default case and have left the country in January last year when the scam came to the light. Nirav Modi then was arrested on March 19 by Scotland Yard in connection with the case and is serving jail term since then.

Despite repeated summonses from Indian probe agencies and courts, Nirav hasn’t yet returned to India, though the country is seeking his extradition to make him face the law of the land for the economic offences he has committed.