The Enforcement Directorate on Friday said that it has provisionally attached gems, jewellery and bank balances worth Rs 253.62 crore of companies linked to fugitive diamond trader Nirav Modi.
The movable assets are in Hong Kong, the central agency said. “With this, total attached/seized assets tally in the case stands at Rs. 2650.07 crore,” the Enforcement Directorate said.
Nirav Modi and his associates are accused of duping the Punjab National Bank of more than Rs 13,000 crore. They allegedly made profits from fraudulent transactions involving letters of undertaking issued by the Punjab National Bank. Such letters give the bank guarantee for one of its customers to make payments to its offshore suppliers in foreign currency.
Modi is currently in jail in the United Kingdom and Indian authorities are attempting to extradite him.
The Enforcement Directorate is investigating allegations against the fugitive diamond trader under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act. Earlier, it had attached movable and immovable assets belonging to him and his associates worth Rs 2,396.45 crore in India as well as abroad.
“Furthermore, movable and immovable assets of Nirav Modi and his associates amounting to Rs. 1389 crore, have been confiscated under provisions of Fugitive Economic Offenders Act, 2018 by [a special court in Mumbai],” the agency said.
The Enforcement Directorate said that a part of the confiscated assets has already been handed over to banks that Modi and his associates had allegedly defrauded.
The Fugitive Economic Offenders Act allows courts to confiscate the assets of economic offenders who attempt to evade prosecution by remaining outside the jurisdiction of Indian courts.