India’s fugitive diamond trader and Nivar Modi has suffered a major setback from the US court. The court turned down the plea of Nirav and two of his associates seeking quashing of fraud charges leveled against them by a trustee of three companies.
Richard Levine, a court-appointed trustee of three US companies Firestar Diamond, Fantasy Inc and A Jeff, made the allegations in a New York court. Earlier these three companies were indirectly owned by 50-year-old Nirav Modi.
Levin has also sought a minimum compensation of $15 million for the “losses” caused to creditors to Modi and his associates Mihir Bhansali and Ajay Gandhi. Judge Sean H Lane of a New York court hearing bankruptcy cases last Friday issued the order in a blow to India’s fugitive diamantaire and his associates.
Nirav Modi, lodged in a UK jail, is challenging India’s efforts to extradite him to face charges of fraud and money laundering in the Punjab National Bank (PNB) scam case.
What did the court say in its decision?
Indian-American lawyer Ravi Batra said, “Judge Lane, in a clear judgment, has rejected the plea of accused Nirav Modi, Mahir Bhansali and Ajay Gandhi, seeking dismissal of the amended complaint by US Trustee Richard Levine.”
Giving details of the 60-page order, Batra said that Nirav Modi had planned to defraud Punjab National Bank and others to the tune of $1 billion to reinvest profits in the form of additional sales to falsely increase the company’s share price. Put it in your own company.
Joined the company to hide personal benefits
Batra said, “But they got involved in another fraud to get the money wrongly received from their companies through bank fraud and to hide the withdrawal of money for their personal gain and they showed it as such.”
Like it is a normal business transaction. According to the court order, Levin’s petition has sought compensation for damages caused to the borrowers and their assets by Nirav Modi and his associates as a result of Nirav Modi’s six-year international fraud, money laundering and embezzlement conspiracy.
Decision being reviewed in Britain
Meanwhile, Britain’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said in August that it was reviewing the London High Court’s decision to allow the diamond trader to appeal against the order to extradite Nirav Modi to the Indian government.
The CPS, representing the Indian authorities in the court, said the appeal could be heard on two grounds, including the mental health of the diamond trader.