A Prevention of Money Laundering Act court in Mumbai on Wednesday issued an “open-ended non-bailable warrant” against diamond merchant Nirav Modi’s wife Ami, The Hindu reported. Ami Modi’s last known location was in the United States.
Nirav Modi is wanted for allegedly duping the Punjab National Bank of over Rs 13,000 crore. He was arrested in London on Tuesday and will remain in custody at HM Prison Wandsworth till March 29.
Ami Modi was named in the supplementary complaint filed by the Enforcement Directorate in February. She is accused of money laundering in connection with the purchase of a flat in New York’s Central Park for $30 million, NDTV reported.
The court also allowed the auction of 68 paintings and 11 vehicles, the proceeds of which will be deposited in the Enforcement Directorate’s account. “The paintings, valued at Rs 57.72 crore, were provisionally attached by the ED,” an official told The Hindu. “In a related development, the special court also allowed sale of 11 vehicles belonging to Mr Nirav Modi on an application by the ED. These vehicles were provisionally attached. The attachment order was confirmed by the Adjudicating Authority.”
Nirav Modi, who fled India in January 2018, has been living at an apartment in London’s West End, British newspaper The Telegraph had reported earlier this month. The daily said Modi lives on half a floor of the Centre Point Tower Block, in an apartment whose rent is likely to be around £17,000 per month (Rs 15.5 lakh), and which costs around Rs 73 crore.
The Modi family reportedly left India in the first week of January 2018, just days before the Punjab National Bank filed a first information report against Nirav Modi for alleged fraud. Modi’s wife Ami, a United States citizen, left on January 6, while his uncle and business partner Mehul Choksi left on January 4.