High Court Man involved in money laundering of Rs 1000 cr...

Man involved in money laundering of Rs 1000 cr granted bail

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New Delhi, Mar 6 (ILNS) The Delhi High Court granted bail to a man, who was accused in a case involving money laundering to the tune of Rs 1000 crore under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act, 2002.

Justice Rajnish Bhatnagar, while granting bail to Sai Chandrasekhar, an employee of M/s Hassad of Netherlands, directed the accused to furnish a personal bond of Rs one lakh with surety of the like amount to the satisfaction of the Trial Court. The Court further directed him not to leave the country without the permission of the Special Court.

The case pertains to a petition filed by Chandrasekhar, an employee of M/s Hassad Netherland, seeking bail in an alleged offence under PMLA for his alleged involvement in a huge account fraud of approximately Rs 1000 crore.

The Enforcement Directorate (ED) had alleged that being an employee of the complainant company, Chandrasekhar was aware of the ground realities and despite that he induced the complainant to invest Rs 750 crore in M/s Bush Foods Overseas Private Limited by purchasing its 69.5 per cent shares. Chandrasekhar received a kickback of about Rs. 20 cores, out of which Rs seven crore have been identified. The Counsel appearing for the ED submitted that the present case involves the commission of the grave economic offence of laundering of the proceeds of crime.

The Counsel appearing for Chandrasekhar submitted that pursuant to the investigation already stands filed and the investigation qua the petitioner is complete, whereas, in the predicate offence, the charge sheet, and supplementary charge sheet has also been filed.

The Court noted that at the stage of granting bail, a detailed examination of evidence and elaborate documentation of the merits of the case should be avoided, so that no party should have the impression that his case has been prejudiced. “There is no hard and fast rule regarding grant or refusal to grant bail. Each case has to be considered on the facts and circumstances of each case and on its own merits,” the Court said.

Opposing the bail application, the Counsel for ED submitted that the present case involves the commission of grave economic offence of laundering of the proceeds of crime.

The Counsel appearing for Chandrasekhar submitted that pursuant to the investigation already stands filed and the investigation qua the petitioner is complete, whereas, in the predicate offence, the charge sheet, and supplementary charge sheet has also been filed.

However, the bench noted that petitioner is in custody since October 27, 2020. Nothing has been placed on record to show that he can flee out of the country. As far as the question of tampering is concerned, the evidence is documentary in nature and the documents and digital evidence is in the custody of the prosecuting agency.

While granting bail, the Bench said, “There is no hard and fast rule regarding grant or refusal to grant bail. Each case has to be considered on the facts and circumstances of each case and on its own merits.” ILNS/SNG/JR

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